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Sample records for artificial disc activ

  1. The activL(®) Artificial Disc: a next-generation motion-preserving implant for chronic lumbar discogenic pain.

    PubMed

    Yue, James J; Garcia, Rolando; Miller, Larry E

    2016-01-01

    Degeneration of the lumbar intervertebral discs is a leading cause of chronic low back pain in adults. Treatment options for patients with chronic lumbar discogenic pain unresponsive to conservative management include total disc replacement (TDR) or lumbar fusion. Until recently, only two lumbar TDRs had been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration - the Charité Artificial Disc in 2004 and the ProDisc-L Total Disc Replacement in 2006. In June 2015, a next-generation lumbar TDR received Food and Drug Administration approval - the activL(®) Artificial Disc (Aesculap Implant Systems). Compared to previous-generation lumbar TDRs, the activL(®) Artificial Disc incorporates specific design enhancements that result in a more precise anatomical match and allow a range of motion that better mimics the healthy spine. The results of mechanical and clinical studies demonstrate that the activL(®) Artificial Disc results in improved mechanical and clinical outcomes versus earlier-generation artificial discs and compares favorably to lumbar fusion. The purpose of this report is to describe the activL(®) Artificial Disc including implant characteristics, intended use, surgical technique, postoperative care, mechanical testing, and clinical experience to date.

  2. The activArtificial Disc: a next-generation motion-preserving implant for chronic lumbar discogenic pain

    PubMed Central

    Yue, James J; Garcia, Rolando; Miller, Larry E

    2016-01-01

    Degeneration of the lumbar intervertebral discs is a leading cause of chronic low back pain in adults. Treatment options for patients with chronic lumbar discogenic pain unresponsive to conservative management include total disc replacement (TDR) or lumbar fusion. Until recently, only two lumbar TDRs had been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration − the Charité Artificial Disc in 2004 and the ProDisc-L Total Disc Replacement in 2006. In June 2015, a next-generation lumbar TDR received Food and Drug Administration approval − the activArtificial Disc (Aesculap Implant Systems). Compared to previous-generation lumbar TDRs, the activArtificial Disc incorporates specific design enhancements that result in a more precise anatomical match and allow a range of motion that better mimics the healthy spine. The results of mechanical and clinical studies demonstrate that the activArtificial Disc results in improved mechanical and clinical outcomes versus earlier-generation artificial discs and compares favorably to lumbar fusion. The purpose of this report is to describe the activArtificial Disc including implant characteristics, intended use, surgical technique, postoperative care, mechanical testing, and clinical experience to date. PMID:27274317

  3. Artificial Disc Replacement

    MedlinePlus

    ... treat this condition, alternatives to disc replacement include fusion, nonoperative care or no treatment. Typically, surgery is ... operative treatment for disc pain has been spinal fusion. This is a surgical procedure in which disc ...

  4. Artificial Disc Replacement

    MedlinePlus

    ... also disc replacements designed for use in the cervical spine (the neck). These devices have only been used ... of your spine increases the risk of significant injury during this type of spinal surgery. Back pain ...

  5. Fantastic Disc Activities for Fitness

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Griffin, Michael R.; Johnson, Romona; Thomas, Jessica; Spell, Melissa; Popham, John; Croft, Brent; Umpleby, Albert; Verbel, Eric

    2005-01-01

    Disc activities are an excellent elementary content area for both skill and fitness enhancement. They may occur through progressive skill and drill practice, small sided-game examples, modifications of traditional disc activities appropriate to large groups, and with adjustments designed to increase activity and fitness levels. For games in this…

  6. ISASS Policy Statement – Lumbar Artificial Disc

    PubMed Central

    Garcia, Rolando

    2015-01-01

    Purpose The primary goal of this Policy Statement is to educate patients, physicians, medical providers, reviewers, adjustors, case managers, insurers, and all others involved or affected by insurance coverage decisions regarding lumbar disc replacement surgery. Procedures This Policy Statement was developed by a panel of physicians selected by the Board of Directors of ISASS for their expertise and experience with lumbar TDR. The panel's recommendation was entirely based on the best evidence-based scientific research available regarding the safety and effectiveness of lumbar TDR. PMID:25785243

  7. Disc Golf: Teaching a Lifetime Activity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Eastham, Susan L.

    2015-01-01

    Disc golf is a lifetime activity that can be enjoyed by students of varying skill levels and abilities. Disc golf follows the principles of ball golf but is generally easier for students to play and enjoy success. The object of disc golf is similar to ball golf and involves throwing a disc from the teeing area to the target in as few throws as…

  8. Disc Golf: Teaching a Lifetime Activity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Eastham, Susan L.

    2015-01-01

    Disc golf is a lifetime activity that can be enjoyed by students of varying skill levels and abilities. Disc golf follows the principles of ball golf but is generally easier for students to play and enjoy success. The object of disc golf is similar to ball golf and involves throwing a disc from the teeing area to the target in as few throws as…

  9. Artificial Cervical Disc Arthroplasty (ACDA): tips and tricks

    PubMed Central

    Khadivi, Masoud; Rahimi Movaghar, Vafa; Abdollahzade, Sina

    2012-01-01

    Abstract: Background: Anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) is currently treatment of choice for managing medical therapy refractory cervical degenerative disc disease. Numerous studies have demonstrated the effectiveness of ACDF; patients generally experience rapid recoveries, and dramatic improvement in their pain and quality of life. However, as several studies reported symptomatic adjacent segment disease attributed to fusions’ altered kinematics, cervical disc arthroplasty emerged as a new motion-sparing alternative to fusion. Fusion at one level increases motion at adjacent levels along with increased intradiscal pressures. This phenomenon can result in symptomatic adjacent level degeneration, which can necessitate reoperation at these levels. The era of cervical arthroplasty began in Europe in the late 1990s. In recent years, artificial cervical disc arthroplasty (ACDA) has been increasingly used by spine surgeons for degenerative cervical disc disease. There have been several reports of safety, efficacy and indications of ACDA. Cervical arthroplasty offers several theoretical advantages over anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) in the treatment of selected patients with medically refractory cervical radiculopathy. Preserving motion at the operated level, cervical TDR has the potential to decrease the occurrence of adjacent segment degeneration. There are a few studies on the efficacy and effectiveness of ACDA compared to cervical fusion. However, the true scenery of cervical arthroplasty yet to be identified. Objective: This study is intended to define patients' characteristics and outcomes of ACDA by a single surgeon in Iran. Methods: This retrospective study was performed in two general Hospitals in Tehran, Iran from 2005 To 2010. All patients were operated by one senior neurospine surgeon. One hundred fifty three patients were operated in this period. All patients signed the informed consent form prior to surgery. All patients

  10. Surgical technique for revision surgery of cervical artificial disc replacements.

    PubMed

    Onken, Julia; Meyer, Bernhard; Vajkoczy, Peter

    2017-01-01

    OBJECTIVE Cervical artificial disc replacement (C-ADR) is a widely used procedure with low risk at implantation. Few cases have been reported about the surgical techniques of C-ADR revision. The authors describe their surgical experience with the explantation of a Galileo C-ADR. METHODS Revision surgery was performed in a 58-year-old patient. Patient positioning and surgical opening techniques were performed as appropriate for anterior cervical decompression. RESULTS Revision surgery via the initial anterior approach was successful following an atraumatic removal of the implant. Fusion of the C5-6 segment was performed without complications. CONCLUSIONS In general, the authors observed recurrent nerve palsy and malpositioning of the revised implant in C-ADR revision surgery. Problems with implant removal did not occur because the fusion rate was low due to the short time between initial surgery and C-ADR revision surgery. The video can be found here: https://youtu.be/32CUEDquinc .

  11. Artificial Discs for Lumbar and Cervical Degenerative Disc Disease –Update

    PubMed Central

    2006-01-01

    Executive Summary Objective To assess the safety and efficacy of artificial disc replacement (ADR) technology for degenerative disc disease (DDD). Clinical Need Degenerative disc disease is the term used to describe the deterioration of 1 or more intervertebral discs of the spine. The prevalence of DDD is roughly described in proportion to age such that 40% of people aged 40 years have DDD, increasing to 80% among those aged 80 years or older. Low back pain is a common symptom of lumbar DDD; neck and arm pain are common symptoms of cervical DDD. Nonsurgical treatments can be used to relieve pain and minimize disability associated with DDD. However, it is estimated that about 10% to 20% of people with lumbar DDD and up to 30% with cervical DDD will be unresponsive to nonsurgical treatments. In these cases, surgical treatment is considered. Spinal fusion (arthrodesis) is the process of fusing or joining 2 bones and is considered the surgical gold standard for DDD. Artificial disc replacement is the replacement of the degenerated intervertebral disc with an artificial disc in people with DDD of the lumbar or cervical spine that has been unresponsive to nonsurgical treatments for at least 6 months. Unlike spinal fusion, ADR preserves movement of the spine, which is thought to reduce or prevent the development of adjacent segment degeneration. Additionally, a bone graft is not required for ADR, and this alleviates complications, including bone graft donor site pain and pseudoarthrosis. It is estimated that about 5% of patients who require surgery for DDD will be candidates for ADR. Review Strategy The Medical Advisory Secretariat conducted a computerized search of the literature published between 2003 and September 2005 to answer the following questions: What is the effectiveness of ADR in people with DDD of the lumbar or cervical regions of the spine compared with spinal fusion surgery? Does an artificial disc reduce the incidence of adjacent segment degeneration (ASD

  12. Artificial discs for lumbar and cervical degenerative disc disease -update: an evidence-based analysis.

    PubMed

    2006-01-01

    To assess the safety and efficacy of artificial disc replacement (ADR) technology for degenerative disc disease (DDD). Degenerative disc disease is the term used to describe the deterioration of 1 or more intervertebral discs of the spine. The prevalence of DDD is roughly described in proportion to age such that 40% of people aged 40 years have DDD, increasing to 80% among those aged 80 years or older. Low back pain is a common symptom of lumbar DDD; neck and arm pain are common symptoms of cervical DDD. Nonsurgical treatments can be used to relieve pain and minimize disability associated with DDD. However, it is estimated that about 10% to 20% of people with lumbar DDD and up to 30% with cervical DDD will be unresponsive to nonsurgical treatments. In these cases, surgical treatment is considered. Spinal fusion (arthrodesis) is the process of fusing or joining 2 bones and is considered the surgical gold standard for DDD. Artificial disc replacement is the replacement of the degenerated intervertebral disc with an artificial disc in people with DDD of the lumbar or cervical spine that has been unresponsive to nonsurgical treatments for at least 6 months. Unlike spinal fusion, ADR preserves movement of the spine, which is thought to reduce or prevent the development of adjacent segment degeneration. Additionally, a bone graft is not required for ADR, and this alleviates complications, including bone graft donor site pain and pseudoarthrosis. It is estimated that about 5% of patients who require surgery for DDD will be candidates for ADR. The Medical Advisory Secretariat conducted a computerized search of the literature published between 2003 and September 2005 to answer the following questions: What is the effectiveness of ADR in people with DDD of the lumbar or cervical regions of the spine compared with spinal fusion surgery?Does an artificial disc reduce the incidence of adjacent segment degeneration (ASD) compared with spinal fusion?What is the rate of major

  13. In vitro wear assessment of the Charité Artificial Disc according to ASTM recommendations.

    PubMed

    Serhan, Hassan A; Dooris, Andrew P; Parsons, Matthew L; Ares, Paul J; Gabriel, Stefan M

    2006-08-01

    Biomechanical laboratory research. To evaluate the potential for Ultra High Molecular Weight Polyethylene (UHMWPE) wear debris from the Charité Artificial Disc. Cases of osteolysis from artificial discs are extremely rare, but hip and knee studies demonstrate the osteolytic potential and clinical concern of UHMWPE wear debris. Standards for testing artificial discs continue to evolve, and there are few detailed reports of artificial disc wear characterizations. Implant assemblies were tested to 10 million cycles of +/- 7.5 degrees flexion-extension or +/- 7.5 degrees left/right lateral bending, both with +/- 2 degrees axial rotation and 900 N to 1,850 N cyclic compression. Cores were weighed, measured, and photographed. Soak and loaded soak controls were used. Wear debris was analyzed via scanning electron microscopy and particle counters. The average total wear of the implants was 0.11 and 0.13 mg per million cycles, before and after accounting for serum absorption, respectively. Total height loss was approximately 0.2 mm. Wear debris ranged from submicron to > 10 microm in size. Under these test conditions, the Charité Artificial Disc produced minimal wear debris. Debris size and morphology tended to be similar to other CoCr-UHMWPE joints. More testing is necessary to evaluate the implants under a spectrum of loading conditions.

  14. A prospective morphological study of facet joint integrity following intervertebral disc replacement with the CHARITE Artificial Disc.

    PubMed

    Trouillier, Hans; Kern, P; Refior, H J; Müller-Gerbl, M

    2006-02-01

    In degenerative disc disease (DDD), increased loading in the posterior column increases facet joint subchondral bone density and may lead to facet joint degeneration. While spinal fusion is commonly used to treat patients with symptomatic DDD, increased stress at the levels adjacent to fusion may accelerate facet joint and adjacent segment degeneration. Artificial disc replacements have been developed as an alternative to fusion. In this prospective study, the effects of disc replacement with the CHARITE Artificial Disc on facet joint loading and integrity were evaluated. Thirteen patients aged <50 years with symptomatic DDD were recruited. Computed tomography (CT) osteoabsorptiometry was performed prior to the implantation of the CHARITE Artificial Disc and six months after. With this technique, increases or decreases in facet joint loading and integrity are indicated by corresponding changes in subchondral bone density. Changes in the distribution of load alter the distribution of the areas of maximum bone density. Clinical outcome was also assessed at pre-operative and 6 and 12 month post-operative visits using the Visual Analogue Scale back and leg pain scores, the Oswestry Disability Index and the Short Form-36 (SF-36) questionnaire. The height of the intervertebral space at the operated level was monitored by lateral X-ray. Subchondral bone density was evaluated in the facet joints of all 13 patients at the operated level, 12 patients at the level above the operated segment, and five patients at the level below the operated segment. Quantitative measurements revealed no significant increases (> or =3%) in subchondral bone density of the facet joints at any level in any patient. Significant decreases (> or =3%) in subchondral bone density were measured at the operated level in 10/13 patients, at the level above the operated segment in 6/12 patients, and at the level below the operated segment in 3/5 patients. There were no changes in the distribution of the

  15. A new cervical artificial disc prosthesis based on physiological curvature of end plate: a finite element analysis.

    PubMed

    Yu, Cheng-Cheng; Liu, Peng; Huang, Da-Geng; Jiang, Yong-Hong; Feng, Hang; Hao, Ding-Jun

    2016-11-01

    The study aimed to build a new cervical artificial disc C3-C7 segment prosthesis, and perform a biomechanical comparison between the new prosthesis and the Prestige LP prosthesis using a three-dimensional non-linear finite element (FE) model. The study compared the biomechanical differences between the new cervical artificial disc prosthesis based on the physiological curvature of the end plate and the Prestige LP prosthesis after artificial disc replacement. There has been no prior research on artificial disc prostheses based on the physiological curvature of the end plate; studies of biomechanical changes after cervical disc arthroplasty (CDR) are few. An FE model of the C3-C7 segments was developed and validated. A new cervical artificial disc prosthesis based on the physiological curvature of the end plate and the Prestige LP prosthesis were integrated at the C5-C6 segment into the validated FE model. All models were subjected to a follower load of 73.6 N and a 1 Nm in flexion-extension, lateral bending, and axial torsion. The segmental range of motion (ROM) and stress on the prostheses were analyzed. The ROM in most segments after CDR with new cervical artificial disc prosthesis was more similar to that of the normal cervical spine than the Prestige LP prosthesis. However, there was no significant difference between the two prostheses. The stress on the new artificial disc was significantly less than that in the Prestige LP prosthesis. There was no significant difference in ROM in all segments after CDR for the two prostheses. The stress on the new cervical artificial disc prosthesis based on the physiological curvature of the end plate was significantly less than that in the Prestige LP prosthesis. The new artificial disc prosthesis is feasible and effective, and can reduce the implant-bone interface stress on the end plate, which may be one of the causes of prosthesis subsidence. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. An evaluation of information on the internet about a new device: the cervical artificial disc replacement.

    PubMed

    Qureshi, Sheeraz A; Koehler, Steven M; Lin, James D; Bird, Justin; Garcia, Ryan M; Hecht, Andrew C

    2012-05-01

    Cross-sectional survey. The objective of this study was to investigate the authorship, content, and quality of information available to the public on the Internet pertaining to the cervical artificial disc replacement device. The Internet is widely used by patients as an educational tool for health care information. In addition, the Internet is used as a medium for direct-to-consumer marketing. Increasing interest in cervical artificial disc replacement has led to the emergence of numerous Web sites offering information about this procedure. It is thought that patients can be influenced by information found on the Internet. A cross section of Web sites accessible to the general public was surveyed. Three commonly used search engines were used to locate 150 (50/search engine) Web sites providing information about the cervical artificial disc replacement. Each Web site was evaluated with regard to authorship and content. Fifty-three percent of the Web sites reviewed were authorized by a private physician group, 4% by an academic physician group, 13% by industry, 16% were news reports, and 14% were not otherwise categorized. Sixty-five percent of Web sites offered a mechanism for direct contact and 19% provided clear patient eligibility criteria. Benefits were expressed in 80% of Web sites, whereas associated risks were described in 35% or less. European experiences were noted in 17% of Web sites, whereas only 9% of Web sites detailed the current US experience. CONCLUSION.: The results of this study demonstrate that much of the content of the Internet-derived information pertaining to the cervical artificial disc replacement is for marketing purposes and may not represent unbiased information. Until we can confirm the content on a Web site to be accurate, patients should be cautioned when using the Internet as a source for health care information related to cervical disc replacement.

  17. Does location of rotation center in artificial disc affect cervical biomechanics?

    PubMed

    Mo, Zhongjun; Zhao, Yanbin; Du, Chengfei; Sun, Yu; Zhang, Ming; Fan, Yubo

    2015-04-15

    A 3-dimensional finite element investigation. To compare the biomechanical performances of different rotation centers (RCs) in the prevalent artificial cervical discs. Various configurations are applied in artificial discs. Design parameters may influence the biomechanics of implanted spine. The RC is a primary variation in the popular artificial discs. Implantation of 5 prostheses was simulated at C5-C6 on the basis of a validated finite element cervical model (C3-C7). The prostheses included ball-in-socket design with a fixed RC located on the inferior endplate (BS-FI) and on the superior endplate (BS-FS), with a mobile RC at the inferior endplate (BS-MI), dual articulation with a mobile RC between the endplates (DA-M), and sliding articulation with various RCs (SA-V). The spinal motions in flexion and extension served as a displacement loading at the C3 vertebrae. Total disc replacements reduced extension moment. The ball-in-socket designs required less flexion moment, whereas the flexion stiffness of the spines with DA-M and SA-V was similar to that of the healthy model. The contributions of the implanted level to the global motions increased in the total disc replacements, except in the SA-V and DA-M models (in flexion). Ball-in-socket designs produced severe stress distributions in facet cartilage, whereas DA-M and SA-V produced more severe stress distribution on the bone-implant interface. Cervical stability was extremely affected in extension and partially affected in flexion by total disc replacement. With the prostheses with mobile RC, cervical curvature was readjusted under a low follower load. The SA-V and BS-FS designs exhibited better performances in the entire segmental stiffness and in the stability of the operative level than the BS-MI and BS-FI designs in flexion. The 5 designs demonstrated varying advantages relative to the stress distribution in the facet cartilages and on the bone-implant interface. 5.

  18. Biomechanical Effects of the Geometry of Ball-and-Socket Artificial Disc on Lumbar Spine: A Finite Element Study.

    PubMed

    Choi, Jisoo; Shin, Dong-Ah; Kim, Sohee

    2017-03-15

    A three-dimensional finite element model of intact lumbar spine was constructed and four surgical finite element models implanted with ball-and-socket artificial discs with four different radii of curvature were compared. To investigate biomechanical effects of the curvature of ball-and-socket artificial disc using finite element analysis. Total disc replacement (TDR) has been accepted as an alternative treatment because of its advantages over spinal fusion methods in degenerative disc disease. However, the influence of the curvature of artificial ball-and-socket discs has not been fully understood. Four surgical finite element models with different radii of curvature of ball-and-socket artificial discs were constructed. The range of motion (ROM) increased with decreasing radius of curvature in extension, flexion, and lateral bending, whereas it increased with increasing radius of curvature in axial torsion. The facet contact force was minimum with the largest radius of curvature in extension, flexion, and lateral bending, whereas it was maximum with the largest radius in axial torsion. It was also affected by the disc placement, more with posterior placement than anterior placement. The stress in L4 cancellous bone increased when the radius of curvature was too large or small. The geometry of ball-and-socket artificial disc significantly affects the ROM, facet contact force, and stress in the cancellous bone at the surgical level. The implication is that in performing TDR, the ball-and-socket design may not be ideal, as ROM and facet contact force are sensitive to the disc design, which may be exaggerated by the individual difference of anatomical geometry. N/A.

  19. Biotribological evaluation of artificial disc arthroplasty devices: influence of loading and kinematic patterns during in vitro wear simulation

    PubMed Central

    Yue, James J.; Garcia, Rolando; Basson, Janet; Schwiesau, Jens; Fritz, Bernhard; Blömer, Wilhelm

    2008-01-01

    Wear simulation is an essential pre-clinical method to predict the mid- and long-term clinical wear behavior of newly introduced devices for total disc arthroplasty. The main requirement of a suitable method for spinal wear simulation has to be the ability to distinguish between design concepts and allow for a direct comparison of predicate devices. The objective of our study was to investigate the influence of loading and kinematic patterns based on two different protocols for spinal wear simulation (ISO/FDIS 18192-1 (2006) and ASTM F2423-05). In vitro wear simulation was performed with six activ® L lumbar artificial disc devices (Aesculap Tuttlingen, Germany). The applied kinematic pattern of movement was multidirectional for ISO (elliptic track) and unidirectional with a curvilinear shape for ASTM. Testing was done for 10 million cycles in the ISO loading mode and afterwards with the same specimens for 5 million cycles according to the ASTM protocol with a customized six-station servohydraulic spinal wear simulator (EndoLab Thansau, Germany). Gravimetrical and geometrical wear assessment, a slide track analysis correlated to an optical surface characterization, and an estimation of particle size and morphology were performed. The gravimetric wear rate for the first 10 million cycles was ISOinitial = 2.7 ± 0.3 mg/million cycles. During the ASTM test period (10–15 million cycles) a gravimetric wear rate of 0.14 ± 0.06 mg/million cycles was estimated. The wear rates between the ISO and ASTM driven simulations differ substantially (approximately 20-fold) and statistical analysis demonstrates a significant difference (p < 0.001) between the test groups. The main explanation of divergency between ISO and ASTM driven wear simulations is the multidirectional pattern of movement described in the ISO document resulting in a cross-shear stress on the polyethylene material. Due to previous retrieval observations, it seems to be very unlikely that a lumbar

  20. Biotribological evaluation of artificial disc arthroplasty devices: influence of loading and kinematic patterns during in vitro wear simulation.

    PubMed

    Grupp, Thomas M; Yue, James J; Garcia, Rolando; Basson, Janet; Schwiesau, Jens; Fritz, Bernhard; Blömer, Wilhelm

    2009-01-01

    Wear simulation is an essential pre-clinical method to predict the mid- and long-term clinical wear behavior of newly introduced devices for total disc arthroplasty. The main requirement of a suitable method for spinal wear simulation has to be the ability to distinguish between design concepts and allow for a direct comparison of predicate devices. The objective of our study was to investigate the influence of loading and kinematic patterns based on two different protocols for spinal wear simulation (ISO/FDIS 18192-1 (2006) and ASTM F2423-05). In vitro wear simulation was performed with six activ L lumbar artificial disc devices (Aesculap Tuttlingen, Germany). The applied kinematic pattern of movement was multidirectional for ISO (elliptic track) and unidirectional with a curvilinear shape for ASTM. Testing was done for 10 million cycles in the ISO loading mode and afterwards with the same specimens for 5 million cycles according to the ASTM protocol with a customized six-station servohydraulic spinal wear simulator (EndoLab Thansau, Germany). Gravimetrical and geometrical wear assessment, a slide track analysis correlated to an optical surface characterization, and an estimation of particle size and morphology were performed. The gravimetric wear rate for the first 10 million cycles was ISO(initial) = 2.7 +/- 0.3 mg/million cycles. During the ASTM test period (10-15 million cycles) a gravimetric wear rate of 0.14 +/- 0.06 mg/million cycles was estimated. The wear rates between the ISO and ASTM driven simulations differ substantially (approximately 20-fold) and statistical analysis demonstrates a significant difference (p < 0.001) between the test groups. The main explanation of divergency between ISO and ASTM driven wear simulations is the multidirectional pattern of movement described in the ISO document resulting in a cross-shear stress on the polyethylene material. Due to previous retrieval observations, it seems to be very unlikely that a lumbar artificial

  1. Disc Activities in Physical Education: A Comprehensive Approach

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cramer, Stanley J.

    2017-01-01

    Nearly everyone who throws a disc associates the activity with fun. Over the years, multiple disc games and activities have been invented, combining fun and learning. These are games that many individuals are likely to continue playing long after they have left school and are worthy of being included in a contemporary physical education program.…

  2. [Biomechanical research on morphometric changes in adjacent inferior cervical intervertebral foramen after artificial disc replacement].

    PubMed

    Wang, Bin; Zhang, Zhigang; Li, Kanghua

    2007-10-01

    To explore changes in the height and width of the cervical intervertebral foramina of C6.7 before and after the C5.6 discetomy, the replacement or the anterior intervertebral fusion so as to provide the theoretical basis for the clinical practice. Eleven fresh cervical spinal specimens were obtained from young adult cadavers. The specimens of C5.6 were divided into the integrity group, the discectomy group, the artificial disc replacement group, and the intervertebral fusion group. The range of variety (ROV) of the C6.7 intervertebral foramen dimensions (height, width) before and after the loading tests (0.75, 1.50 Nm) were measured in the 4 groups. The C6.7 intervetebral foramen height and width increased significantly during flexion (P < 0.01) but decreased significantly during extension (P < 0.01). There was a significant difference between the two test conditions in each of the 4 groups (P < 0.01). However, in the two test conditions there was no significant difference in ROV of the C6,7 intervetebral foramen height and width during flexion and extension between the integrity group, the discectomy, and the artificial disc replacement group (P > 0.05), but a significant difference in the above changes existed in the intervertebral fusion group when compared with the other 3 groups (P < 0.05). In the same group and under the same conditions, the ROV of the C6.7 intervetebral foramen height and width was significantly different in the two test conditions (P < 0.01). The results have indicated that artificial disc replacement can meet the requirements of the normal cervical vitodynamics. The adjacent inferior cervical intervetebral foramen increases during flexion but decreases during extension. The intervertebral fusion is probably one of the causes for the cervical degeneration or the accelerated degeneration and for the cervical spondylotic radiculopathy and the brachial plexus compression.

  3. Mixed reality simulation of rasping procedure in artificial cervical disc replacement (ACDR) surgery.

    PubMed

    Halic, Tansel; Kockara, Sinan; Bayrak, Coskun; Rowe, Richard

    2010-10-07

    Until quite recently spinal disorder problems in the U.S. have been operated by fusing cervical vertebrae instead of replacement of the cervical disc with an artificial disc. Cervical disc replacement is a recently approved procedure in the U.S. It is one of the most challenging surgical procedures in the medical field due to the deficiencies in available diagnostic tools and insufficient number of surgical practices For physicians and surgical instrument developers, it is critical to understand how to successfully deploy the new artificial disc replacement systems. Without proper understanding and practice of the deployment procedure, it is possible to injure the vertebral body. Mixed reality (MR) and virtual reality (VR) surgical simulators are becoming an indispensable part of physicians' training, since they offer a risk free training environment. In this study, MR simulation framework and intricacies involved in the development of a MR simulator for the rasping procedure in artificial cervical disc replacement (ACDR) surgery are investigated. The major components that make up the MR surgical simulator with motion tracking system are addressed. A mixed reality surgical simulator that targets rasping procedure in the artificial cervical disc replacement surgery with a VICON motion tracking system was developed. There were several challenges in the development of MR surgical simulator. First, the assembly of different hardware components for surgical simulation development that involves knowledge and application of interdisciplinary fields such as signal processing, computer vision and graphics, along with the design and placements of sensors etc . Second challenge was the creation of a physically correct model of the rasping procedure in order to attain critical forces. This challenge was handled with finite element modeling. The third challenge was minimization of error in mapping movements of an actor in real model to a virtual model in a process called

  4. Mixed reality simulation of rasping procedure in artificial cervical disc replacement (ACDR) surgery

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Until quite recently spinal disorder problems in the U.S. have been operated by fusing cervical vertebrae instead of replacement of the cervical disc with an artificial disc. Cervical disc replacement is a recently approved procedure in the U.S. It is one of the most challenging surgical procedures in the medical field due to the deficiencies in available diagnostic tools and insufficient number of surgical practices For physicians and surgical instrument developers, it is critical to understand how to successfully deploy the new artificial disc replacement systems. Without proper understanding and practice of the deployment procedure, it is possible to injure the vertebral body. Mixed reality (MR) and virtual reality (VR) surgical simulators are becoming an indispensable part of physicians’ training, since they offer a risk free training environment. In this study, MR simulation framework and intricacies involved in the development of a MR simulator for the rasping procedure in artificial cervical disc replacement (ACDR) surgery are investigated. The major components that make up the MR surgical simulator with motion tracking system are addressed. Findings A mixed reality surgical simulator that targets rasping procedure in the artificial cervical disc replacement surgery with a VICON motion tracking system was developed. There were several challenges in the development of MR surgical simulator. First, the assembly of different hardware components for surgical simulation development that involves knowledge and application of interdisciplinary fields such as signal processing, computer vision and graphics, along with the design and placements of sensors etc . Second challenge was the creation of a physically correct model of the rasping procedure in order to attain critical forces. This challenge was handled with finite element modeling. The third challenge was minimization of error in mapping movements of an actor in real model to a virtual model in a

  5. Long term preservation of motion with artificial cervical disc implants: A comparison between cervical disc replacement and rigid fusion with cage

    PubMed Central

    Cincu, Rafael; Lorente, Francisco de Asis; Gomez, Joaquin; Eiras, Jose; Agrawal, Amit

    2014-01-01

    Background: With the advancement of technologies there is more interest in the maintenance of the spine's biomechanical properties focusing on the preservation of the functional motion segment. In present article we describe our experience with 25 cases managed with artificial cervical discs with 28 Solis cage following cervical discectomy with a mean follow-up period of 7.5 year. Materials and Methods: All surgeries were performed by single surgeon from March 2004 to June 2005 with a follow-up till date. Patients with symptomatic single or multiple level diseases that had no prior cervical surgery were candidates for the study. Cohort demographics were comparable. Standardized clinical outcome measures and radiographic examinations were used at prescribed post-operative intervals to compare the treatment groups. Relief in radicular pain, cervical spine motion, and degenerative changes at follow-up were noted. Results: In a total 53 cases, the mean age in prosthesis group was 47 years (age range: 30-63 years) and mean age in cage group was 44 years (32-62 years). Mean hospital stay was 2.7 days in both the groups. At 4 weeks complete cervical movements could be achieved in 19 cases in artificial disc group. Maintenance of movement after 7.5 years was in 76% of these patients. Lordosis was maintained in all cases till date. There was no mortality or wound infection in our series. Conclusions: We conclude that artificial cervical disc could be an alternative to fixed spinal fusion as it represents the most physiological substitute of disc. However, there is need for further studies to support the use of artificial cervical disc prosthesis. PMID:25685218

  6. Effect of an artificial disc on lumbar spine biomechanics: a probabilistic finite element study.

    PubMed

    Rohlmann, Antonius; Mann, Anke; Zander, Thomas; Bergmann, Georg

    2009-01-01

    The effects of different parameters on the mechanical behaviour of the lumbar spine were in most cases determined deterministically with only one uncertain parameter varied at a time while the others were kept fixed. Thus most parameter combinations were disregarded. The aim of the study was to determine in a probabilistic finite element study how intervertebral rotation, intradiscal pressure, and contact force in the facet joints are affected by the input parameters implant position, implant ball radius, presence of scar tissue, and gap size in the facet joints. An osseoligamentous finite element model of the lumbar spine ranging from L3 vertebra to L5/S1 intervertebral disc was used. An artificial disc with a fixed center of rotation was inserted at level L4/L5. The model was loaded with pure moments of 7.5 Nm to simulate flexion, extension, lateral bending, and axial torsion. In a probabilistic study the implant position in anterior-posterior (ap) and in lateral direction, the radius of the implant ball, and the gap size of the facet joint were varied. After implanting an artificial disc, scar tissue may develop, replacing the anterior longitudinal ligament. Thus presence and absence of scar tissue were also simulated. For each loading case studied, intervertebral rotations, intradiscal pressures and contact forces in the facet joints were calculated for 1,000 randomized input parameter combinations in order to determine the probable range of these output parameters. Intervertebral rotation at implant level varies strongly for different combinations of the input parameters. It is mainly affected by gap size, ap-position and implant ball radius for flexion, by scar tissue and implant ball radius for extension and lateral bending, and by gap size and implant ball radius for axial torsion. For extension, intervertebral rotation at implant level varied between 1.4 degrees and 7.5 degrees . Intradiscal pressure in the adjacent discs is only slightly affected by all

  7. In vitro biomechanical comparison after fixed- and mobile-core artificial cervical disc replacement versus fusion.

    PubMed

    Lou, Jigang; Li, Yuanchao; Wang, Beiyu; Meng, Yang; Wu, Tingkui; Liu, Hao

    2017-10-01

    In vitro biomechanical analysis after cervical disc replacement (CDR) with a novel artificial disc prosthesis (mobile core) was conducted and compared with the intact model, simulated fusion, and CDR with a fixed-core prosthesis. The purpose of this experimental study was to analyze the biomechanical changes after CDR with a novel prosthesis and the differences between fixed- and mobile-core prostheses.Six human cadaveric C2-C7 specimens were biomechanically tested sequentially in 4 different spinal models: intact specimens, simulated fusion, CDR with a fixed-core prosthesis (Discover, DePuy), and CDR with a mobile-core prosthesis (Pretic-I, Trauson). Moments up to 2 Nm with a 75 N follower load were applied in flexion-extension, left and right lateral bending, and left and right axial rotation. The total range of motion (ROM), segmental ROM, and adjacent intradiscal pressure (IDP) were calculated and analyzed in 4 different spinal models, as well as the differences between 2 disc prostheses.Compared with the intact specimens, the total ROM, segmental ROM, and IDP at the adjacent segments showed no significant difference after arthroplasty. Moreover, CDR with a mobile-core prosthesis presented a little higher values of target segment (C5/6) and total ROM than CDR with a fixed-core prosthesis (P > .05). Besides, the difference in IDP at C4/5 after CDR with 2 prostheses was without statistical significance in all the directions of motion. However, the IDP at C6/7 after CDR with a mobile-core prosthesis was lower than CDR with a fixed-core prosthesis in flexion, extension, and lateral bending, with significant difference (P < .05), but not under axial rotation.CDR with a novel prosthesis was effective to maintain the ROM at the target segment and did not affect the ROM and IDP at the adjacent segments. Moreover, CDR with a mobile-core prosthesis presented a little higher values of target segment and total ROM, but lower IDP at the inferior adjacent segment

  8. How to choose when implants of adjacent height both fit the disc space properly in single-level cervical artificial disc replacement.

    PubMed

    Rong, Xin; Lou, Jigang; Li, Huibo; Meng, Yang; Liu, Hao

    2017-07-01

    In cervical artificial disc replacement (C-ADR), sometimes we encountered with such cases that implants of adjacent height both fit the target disc space properly. No study was available discussing the choice of implant height and the clinical outcomes under such circumstance. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the impact of different implant heights on the clinical outcomes and radiographic results when the implants of adjacent height both fit the disc space properly. This retrospective study included 34 patients underwent single-level C-ADR at the C5-C6 level at our institution. In these 34 patients, implant with either 5 mm height or 6 mm height fit the surgical level properly without overstretching the disc space or the facet joint space. Clinical outcomes were evaluated using the Japanese Orthopedic Association score, visual analog scale (VAS), and Neck Disability Index. Radiographic assessments were conducted on static and dynamic radiographs for the determination of the disc space height, intersegmental range of motion (ROM), and the ROM of the functional spinal unit (FSU) at the surgical level. The baseline information of the patients, such as age, gender, weight, follow-up time, and diagnosis, was similar between the 2 groups (P > .05). Postoperative mean VAS in group B was significantly lower than that in group A (2.1 ± 0.7 vs. 2.7 ± 1.0, P < .05). The mean VAS decrease in group B was significantly larger than that in group A (5.3 ± 0.8 vs. 4.6 ± 1.1, P < .05). Significant difference was found in the postoperative disc height of the surgical segment between the 2 groups (6.4 ± 0.4 mm vs. 7.5 ± 0.5 mm, P < .05). No significant differences were noted in the intersegmental ROM and ROM of the FSU between the 2 groups both before the surgery and at the last follow-up (P > .05). No hypermobility or instability was observed in these patients. Our results suggested that when implants of adjacent

  9. Anhidrosis after anterior retroperitoneal approach for L4-L5 artificial disc replacement.

    PubMed

    Kasliwal, Manish K; Deutsch, Harel

    2011-07-01

    Description of injury to the sympathetic nervous system after the anterior approach to the lumbosacral spine remains restricted to reports of retrograde ejaculation in males occurring in 2% to 20% of patients. The authors describe a 46-year-old female who presented with low back pain for several years due to degenerative disk disease at L4-L5 that had been treated with an L4-L5 artificial disc replacement though a left anterior retroperitoneal approach. She has had an excellent outcome with complete resolution of her back pain, but noticed the development of dryness of her left lower limb with anhidrosis and skin breakdown, which has caused persistent discomfort. The complication had persisted at her 1-year follow up. Damage to the sympathetic system may often go unrecognized but present with subtle symptoms, as described in the present report. Sympathetic injury in women is often not addressed and remains unrecognized except for a few reports of vaginal dryness or anaesthesia. A short description of this unusual and underappreciated complication, which may be a cause of discomfort despite successful surgery, is presented.

  10. The effects of anthropometrics, lifting strength, and physical activities in disc degeneration.

    PubMed

    Videman, Tapio; Levälahti, Esko; Battié, Michele C

    2007-06-01

    A cross-sectional study design was used. The objective was to examine the influences of body anthropometrics, axial disc area, and lifting strength on disc degeneration and to compare these with the effects of lifetime physical demands and age. Although recent studies have shown that heredity is a dominant factor in disc degeneration, the common notion that occupational physical loading is the major risk factor persists. However, substantial variations in disc degeneration, particularly at the lowest lumbar levels, remain unexplained by heredity or occupational physical demands. Univariate methods and stepwise multiple regression modeling were used to estimate associations of body height, weight, fat content, axial disc area, isokinetic lifting performance, and lifetime routine physical activities at work and leisure with disc height narrowing and disc signal (in T2 images) based on lumbar MRIs. These data were available from a population sample of 600 men, 35 to 70 years of age. Lower disc signal, representing disc desiccation, was associated with higher age, lower body mass and lifting strength, and larger axial disc area. Of the variance in disc signal, age explained 8.0% (P < 0.001) and body weight/axial disc area, isokinetic lifting strength, and occupational lifting history added 3.9%, 2.3%, and 1.3%, respectively. Greater disc narrowing was associated with higher age, larger axial disc area, and higher occupational physical loading. Of the variance in disc narrowing, age accounted for 3.8% (P < 0.001); axial disc area and occupational loading added 1.9% (P < 0.004) and 1.3% (P < 0.007), respectively. Body weight, lifting strength, and axial disc area were more highly associated with disc degeneration than occupational and leisure physical activity histories, although all had modest influences. Furthermore, higher body mass, greater lifting strength, and heavier work were all associated with more disc height narrowing but less disc desiccation contrary to

  11. Notch Inhibits Yorkie Activity in Drosophila Wing Discs

    PubMed Central

    Djiane, Alexandre; Zaessinger, Sophie; Babaoğlan, A. Burcu; Bray, Sarah J.

    2014-01-01

    During development, tissues and organs must coordinate growth and patterning so they reach the right size and shape. During larval stages, a dramatic increase in size and cell number of Drosophila wing imaginal discs is controlled by the action of several signaling pathways. Complex cross-talk between these pathways also pattern these discs to specify different regions with different fates and growth potentials. We show that the Notch signaling pathway is both required and sufficient to inhibit the activity of Yorkie (Yki), the Salvador/Warts/Hippo (SWH) pathway terminal transcription activator, but only in the central regions of the wing disc, where the TEAD factor and Yki partner Scalloped (Sd) is expressed. We show that this cross-talk between the Notch and SWH pathways is mediated, at least in part, by the Notch target and Sd partner Vestigial (Vg). We propose that, by altering the ratios between Yki, Sd and Vg, Notch pathway activation restricts the effects of Yki mediated transcription, therefore contributing to define a zone of low proliferation in the central wing discs. PMID:25157415

  12. Biomechanics of Hybrid Anterior Cervical Fusion and Artificial Disc Replacement in 3-Level Constructs: An In Vitro Investigation

    PubMed Central

    Liao, Zhenhua; Fogel, Guy R.; Pu, Ting; Gu, Hongsheng; Liu, Weiqiang

    2015-01-01

    Background The ideal surgical approach for cervical disk disease remains controversial, especially for multilevel cervical disease. The purpose of this study was to investigate the biomechanics of the cervical spine after 3-level hybrid surgery compared with 3-level anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF). Material/Methods Eighteen human cadaveric spines (C2-T1) were evaluated under displacement-input protocol. After intact testing, a simulated hybrid construct or fusion construct was created between C3 to C6 and tested in the following 3 conditions: 3-level disc plate disc (3DPD), 3-level plate disc plate (3PDP), and 3-level plate (3P). Results Compared to intact, almost 65~80% of motion was successfully restricted at C3-C6 fusion levels (p<0.05). 3DPD construct resulted in slight increase at the 3 instrumented levels (p>0.05). 3PDP construct resulted in significant decrease of ROM at C3-C6 levels less than 3P (p<0.05). Both 3DPD and 3PDP caused significant reduction of ROM at the arthrodesis level and produced motion increase at the arthroplasty level. For adjacent levels, 3P resulted in markedly increased contribution of both upper and lower adjacent levels (p<0.05). Significant motion increases lower than 3P were only noted at partly adjacent levels in some conditions for 3DPD and 3PDP (p<0.05). Conclusions ACDF eliminated motion within the construct and greatly increased adjacent motion. Artificial cervical disc replacement normalized motion of its segment and adjacent segments. While hybrid conditions failed to restore normal motion within the construct, they significantly normalized motion in adjacent segments compared with the 3-level ACDF condition. The artificial disc in 3-level constructs has biomechanical advantages compared to fusion in normalizing motion. PMID:26529430

  13. Artificial disc versus fusion: a prospective, randomized study with 2-year follow-up on 99 patients.

    PubMed

    Sasso, Rick C; Smucker, Joseph D; Hacker, Robert J; Heller, John G

    2007-12-15

    A total of 115 patients were randomized in a 1:1 ratio to a Bryan artificial disc replacement (56) or an anterior cervical fusion with allograft and a plate (59). The purpose of this study is to examine the functional outcome and radiographic results of this prospective, randomized trial to determine the role of the Bryan artificial cervical disc replacement for patients with 1-level cervical disc disease. Artificial cervical disc replacement has become an option for cervical radiculopathy. Previous studies have evaluated the efficacy of this alternative without the scientific rigor of a concurrent control population. This study is a pooled data set from 3 centers involved in the U.S. FDA Investigational Device Exemption trial evaluating the Bryan artificial cervical disc. The purpose of this study is to examine the functional outcome and radiographic results of this prospective, randomized trial to determine the role of the Bryan artificial cervical disc replacement for patients with 1-level cervical disc disease; 12-month follow-up is available for 110 patients and 24 month follow-up complete for 99 patients. There are 30 males and 26 females in the Bryan group and 32 males and 27 females in the fusion group. The average age was 43 years (Bryan) and 46 years (fusion). Disability and pain were assessed using the Neck Disability Index (NDI) and the Visual Analog Scale (VAS) of the neck and of the arm pain. SF-36 outcome measures were obtained including the physical component as well as the mental component scores. Range of motion was determined by independent radiologic assessment of flexion-extension radiographs. We report a prospective, randomized study comparing the functional outcome of cervical disc replacement to an anterior cervical fusion with results of 99 patients at 2 years. Prospective data were collected before surgery and at 6 weeks, 3, 6, 12, and 24 months after surgery. The average operative time for the control group was 1.1 hours and the Bryan

  14. Initial clinical experience with a next-generation artificial disc for the treatment of symptomatic degenerative cervical radiculopathy.

    PubMed

    Reyes-Sanchez, Alejandro; Miramontes, Victor; Olivarez, Luis M Rosales; Aquirre, Armando Alpizar; Quiroz, Alfredo Ortega; Zarate-Kalfopulos, Baron

    2010-01-01

    A feasibility trial was conducted to evaluate the initial safety and clinical use of a next-generation artificial cervical disc (M6-C artificial cervical disc; Spinal Kinetics, Sunnyvale, CA) for the treatment of patients with symptomatic degenerative cervical radiculopathy. A standardized battery of validated outcome measures was utilized to assess condition-specific functional impairment, pain severity, and quality of life. Thirty-six consecutive patients were implanted with the M6-C disc and complete clinical and radiographic outcomes for 25 patients (mean age, 44.5 ± 10.1 years) with radiographically-confirmed cervical disc disease and symptomatic radiculopathy unresponsive to conservative medical management are included in this report. All patients had disc-osteophyte complex causing neural compression and were treated with discectomy and artificial cervical disc replacement at either single level (n = 12) or 2-levels (n = 13). Functional impairment was evaluated using the Neck Disability Index (NDI). Evaluation of arm and neck pain severity utilized a standard 11-point numeric scale, and health-related quality of life was evaluated with the SF-36 Health Survey. Quantitative radiographic assessments of intervertebral motion were performed using specialized motion analysis software, QMA (Quantitative Motion Analysis; Medical Metrics, Houston, TX). All outcome measures were evaluated pre-treatment and at 6 weeks, 3, 6, 12, and 24 months. The mean NDI score improved from 51.6 ± 11.3% pre-treatment to 27.9 ± 16.9% at 24 months, representing an approximate 46% improvement (P <.0001). The mean arm pain score improved from 6.9 ± 2.5 pre-treatment to 3.9 ± 3.1 at 24 months (43%, P =.0006). The mean neck pain score improved from 7.8 ± 2.0 pre-treatment to 3.8 ± 3.0 at 24 months (51%, P <.0001). The mean PCS score of the SF-36 improved from 34.8 ± 7.8 pre-treatment to 43.8 ± 9.3 by 24 months (26%, P =.0006). Subgroup analyses found that patients treated at

  15. Initial clinical experience with a next-generation artificial disc for the treatment of symptomatic degenerative cervical radiculopathy

    PubMed Central

    Reyes-Sanchez, Alejandro; Miramontes, Victor; Olivarez, Luis M. Rosales; Aquirre, Armando Alpizar; Quiroz, Alfredo Ortega; Zarate-Kalfopulos, Baron

    2010-01-01

    Background A feasibility trial was conducted to evaluate the initial safety and clinical use of a next-generation artificial cervical disc (M6-C artificial cervical disc; Spinal Kinetics, Sunnyvale, CA) for the treatment of patients with symptomatic degenerative cervical radiculopathy. A standardized battery of validated outcome measures was utilized to assess condition-specific functional impairment, pain severity, and quality of life. Methods Thirty-six consecutive patients were implanted with the M6-C disc and complete clinical and radiographic outcomes for 25 patients (mean age, 44.5 ± 10.1 years) with radiographically-confirmed cervical disc disease and symptomatic radiculopathy unresponsive to conservative medical management are included in this report. All patients had disc-osteophyte complex causing neural compression and were treated with discectomy and artificial cervical disc replacement at either single level (n = 12) or 2-levels (n = 13). Functional impairment was evaluated using the Neck Disability Index (NDI). Evaluation of arm and neck pain severity utilized a standard 11-point numeric scale, and health-related quality of life was evaluated with the SF-36 Health Survey. Quantitative radiographic assessments of intervertebral motion were performed using specialized motion analysis software, QMA (Quantitative Motion Analysis; Medical Metrics, Houston, TX). All outcome measures were evaluated pre-treatment and at 6 weeks, 3, 6, 12, and 24 months. Results The mean NDI score improved from 51.6 ± 11.3% pre-treatment to 27.9 ± 16.9% at 24 months, representing an approximate 46% improvement (P <.0001). The mean arm pain score improved from 6.9 ± 2.5 pre-treatment to 3.9 ± 3.1 at 24 months (43%, P =.0006). The mean neck pain score improved from 7.8 ± 2.0 pre-treatment to 3.8 ± 3.0 at 24 months (51%, P <.0001). The mean PCS score of the SF-36 improved from 34.8 ± 7.8 pre-treatment to 43.8 ± 9.3 by 24 months (26%, P =.0006). Subgroup analyses found

  16. Hybrid Strategy of Two-Level Cervical Artificial Disc and Intervertebral Cage: Biomechanical Effects on Tissues and Implants.

    PubMed

    Chung, Tzu-Tsao; Hueng, Dueng-Yuan; Lin, Shang-Chih

    2015-11-01

    This numerical study aimed to evaluate tissue and implant responses to the hybrid surgery (HS) of cervical artificial disc replacement (C-ADR) and anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF).Four hybrid strategies of two-level C-ADR and ACDF were compared in terms of adjacent segment degeneration (ASD) and implant failure.The rotary C-ADR and semirigid ACDF have been extensively used in the multilevel treatment of cervical instability and degeneration, but the constrained mobility at the ACDF segments can induce postoperative ASD problems. Hybrid surgery of C-ADR and ACDF has been an alternative to provide the optimal tradeoff between surgical cost and ASD problems. The biomechanical effects of hybrid strategies warrant thorough investigation for the two-level instrumentation.Based on computed tomography imaging, a nonlinear C2-C7 model was developed and validated by cadaveric and numerical data. Four strategies of inserting the C-ADR and ACDF into the C4-C6 segments were systematically arranged as PP (2 peek cages), AA (2 artificial discs), PA, and AP. The biomechanical behavior of these 4 strategies was evaluated in terms of motion and stresses of discs, facet forces, stresses of C-ADR and ACDF, and C-ADR motion.The constrained mobility of the ACDF segment worsened the kinematic and mechanical demands of the adjacent segments and artificial discs. The C-ADR articulation provided higher mobility than the replaced disc of the intact construct, making it an effective buffer to accommodate the compensated mobility and load from the ACDF segment. Consequently, the ASD progression of the AA construct was most restricted, followed by the PA, AP, and PP construct.The PA strategy is a tradeoff to preserve mobility and reduce cost. The C-ADR of the PA construct preserves the mobility of the C5/C6 segment and shares the transferred motion and loads of the fused C4/C5 segment. The PA construct shows optimal biomechanical results for minimizing ASD and implant failure

  17. Artificial disc and vertebra system: a novel motion preservation device for cervical spinal disease after vertebral corpectomy

    PubMed Central

    Dong, Jun; Lu, Meng; Lu, Teng; Liang, Baobao; Xu, Junkui; Qin, Jie; Cai, Xuan; Huang, Sihua; Wang, Dong; Li, Haopeng; He, Xijing

    2015-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To determine the range of motion and stability of the human cadaveric cervical spine after the implantation of a novel artificial disc and vertebra system by comparing an intact group and a fusion group. METHODS: Biomechanical tests were conducted on 18 human cadaveric cervical specimens. The range of motion and the stability index range of motion were measured to study the function and stability of the artificial disc and vertebra system of the intact group compared with the fusion group. RESULTS: In all cases, the artificial disc and vertebra system maintained intervertebral motion and reestablished vertebral height at the operative level. After its implantation, there was no significant difference in the range of motion (ROM) of C3–7 in all directions in the non-fusion group compared with the intact group (p>0.05), but significant differences were detected in flexion, extension and axial rotation compared with the fusion group (p<0.05). The ROM of adjacent segments (C3−4, C6−7) of the non-fusion group decreased significantly in some directions compared with the fusion group (p<0.05). Significant differences in the C4-6 ROM in some directions were detected between the non-fusion group and the intact group. In the fusion group, the C4−6 ROM in all directions decreased significantly compared with the intact and non-fusion groups (p<0.01). The stability index ROM (SI-ROM) of some directions was negative in the non-fusion group, and a significant difference in SI-ROM was only found in the C4−6 segment of the non-fusion group compared with the fusion group. CONCLUSION: An artificial disc and vertebra system could restore vertebral height and preserve the dynamic function of the surgical area and could theoretically reduce the risk of adjacent segment degeneration compared with the anterior fusion procedure. However, our results should be considered with caution because of the low power of the study. The use of a larger sample should be considered

  18. Biomechanics of Artificial Disc Replacements Adjacent to a 2-Level Fusion in 4-Level Hybrid Constructs: An In Vitro Investigation

    PubMed Central

    Liao, Zhenhua; Fogel, Guy R.; Wei, Na; Gu, Hongsheng; Liu, Weiqiang

    2015-01-01

    Background The ideal procedure for multilevel cervical degenerative disc diseases remains controversial. Recent studies on hybrid surgery combining anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) and artificial cervical disc replacement (ACDR) for 2-level and 3-level constructs have been reported in the literature. The purpose of this study was to estimate the biomechanics of 3 kinds of 4-level hybrid constructs, which are more likely to be used clinically compared to 4-level arthrodesis. Material/Methods Eighteen human cadaveric spines (C2–T1) were evaluated in different testing conditions: intact, with 3 kinds of 4-level hybrid constructs (hybrid C3–4 ACDR+C4–6 ACDF+C6–7ACDR; hybrid C3–5ACDF+C5–6ACDR+C6–7ACDR; hybrid C3–4ACDR+C4–5ACDR+C5–7ACDF); and 4-level fusion. Results Four-level fusion resulted in significant decrease in the C3–C7 ROM compared with the intact spine. The 3 different 4-level hybrid treatment groups caused only slight change at the instrumented levels compared to intact except for flexion. At the adjacent levels, 4-level fusion resulted in significant increase of contribution of both upper and lower adjacent levels. However, for the 3 hybrid constructs, significant changes of motion increase far lower than 4P at adjacent levels were only noted in partial loading conditions. No destabilizing effect or hypermobility were observed in any 4-level hybrid construct. Conclusions Four-level fusion significantly eliminated motion within the construct and increased motion at the adjacent segments. For all 3 different 4-level hybrid constructs, ACDR normalized motion of the index segment and adjacent segments with no significant hypermobility. Compared with the 4-level ACDF condition, the artificial discs in 4-level hybrid constructs had biomechanical advantages compared to fusion in normalizing adjacent level motion. PMID:26694835

  19. Cervical total disc replacement with the Mobi-C cervical artificial disc compared with anterior discectomy and fusion for treatment of 2-level symptomatic degenerative disc disease: a prospective, randomized, controlled multicenter clinical trial: clinical article.

    PubMed

    Davis, Reginald J; Kim, Kee D; Hisey, Michael S; Hoffman, Gregory A; Bae, Hyun W; Gaede, Steven E; Rashbaum, Ralph F; Nunley, Pierce Dalton; Peterson, Daniel L; Stokes, John K

    2013-11-01

    Cervical total disc replacement (TDR) is intended to treat neurological symptoms and neck pain associated with degeneration of intervertebral discs in the cervical spine. Anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) has been the standard treatment for these indications since the procedure was first developed in the 1950s. While TDR has been shown to be a safe and effective alternative to ACDF for treatment of patients with degenerative disc disease (DDD) at a single level of the cervical spine, few studies have focused on the safety and efficacy of TDR for treatment of 2 levels of the cervical spine. The primary objective of this study was to rigorously compare the Mobi-C cervical artificial disc to ACDF for treatment of cervical DDD at 2 contiguous levels of the cervical spine. This study was a prospective, randomized, US FDA investigational device exemption pivotal trial of the Mobi-C cervical artificial disc conducted at 24 centers in the US. The primary clinical outcome was a composite measure of study success at 24 months. The comparative control treatment was ACDF using allograft bone and an anterior plate. A total of 330 patients were enrolled, randomized, and received study surgery. All patients were diagnosed with intractable symptomatic cervical DDD at 2 contiguous levels of the cervical spine between C-3 and C-7. Patients were randomized in a 2:1 ratio (TDR patients to ACDF patients). A total of 225 patients received the Mobi-C TDR device and 105 patients received ACDF. At 24 months only 3.0% of patients were lost to follow-up. On average, patients in both groups showed significant improvements in Neck Disability Index (NDI) score, visual analog scale (VAS) neck pain score, and VAS arm pain score from preoperative baseline to each time point. However, the TDR patients experienced significantly greater improvement than ACDF patients in NDI score at all time points and significantly greater improvement in VAS neck pain score at 6 weeks, and at 3, 6, and

  20. Miconazole activity against Candida biofilms developed on acrylic discs.

    PubMed

    Gebremedhin, S; Dorocka-Bobkowska, B; Prylinski, M; Konopka, K; Duzgunes, N

    2014-08-01

    Oral candidiasis in the form of Candida-associated denture stomatitis (CaDS) is associated with Candida adhesion and biofilm formation on the fitting surface of poly (methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) dentures. Candida biofilms show considerable resistance to most conventional antifungal agents, a phenomenon that is considered a developmental-phase-specific event that may help explain the high recurrence rates associated with CaDS. The aim of this study was to examine the activity of miconazole towards in vitro-grown mature Candida biofilms formed on heat-cured PMMA discs as a standardized model. The effect of miconazole nitrate on Candida biofilms developed on acrylic discs was determined for C. albicans MYA-2732 (ATCC), C. glabrata MYA-275 (ATCC), and clinical isolates, C. albicans 6122/06, C. glabrata 7531/06, C. tropicalis 8122/06, and C. parapsilosis 11375/07. Candida biofilms were developed on heat-cured poly(methyl methacrylate) discs and treated with miconazole (0.5 - 96 μg/ml). The metabolic activity of the biofilms was measured by the XTT reduction assay. The minimum inhibitory concentrations (MICs) of miconazole against Candida species were determined by the microdilution method. The MICs for miconazole for the investigated strains ranged from 0.016-32 μg/ml. Treatment with miconazole resulted in a significant reduction of biofilm metabolic activity for all strains. The highest inhibition was observed at 96 μg/ml miconazole. In the case of C. glabrata MYA-275 and C. tropicalis 8122/06 this corresponded to 83.7% and 75.4% inhibition, respectively. The lowest reduction was observed for C. parapsilosis 11375/07-46.1%. For all Candida strains there was a strong correlation between MIC values and miconazole concentrations corresponding to a reduction of metabolic activity of the biofilm by 50%. Miconazole exhibits high antifungal activity against Candida biofilms developed on the surface of PMMA discs. The study provides support for the use of miconazole as an

  1. Mechanically activated artificial cell by using microfluidics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ho, Kenneth K. Y.; Lee, Lap Man; Liu, Allen P.

    2016-09-01

    All living organisms sense mechanical forces. Engineering mechanosensitive artificial cell through bottom-up in vitro reconstitution offers a way to understand how mixtures of macromolecules assemble and organize into a complex system that responds to forces. We use stable double emulsion droplets (aqueous/oil/aqueous) to prototype mechanosensitive artificial cells. In order to demonstrate mechanosensation in artificial cells, we develop a novel microfluidic device that is capable of trapping double emulsions into designated chambers, followed by compression and aspiration in a parallel manner. The microfluidic device is fabricated using multilayer soft lithography technology, and consists of a control layer and a deformable flow channel. Deflections of the PDMS membrane above the main microfluidic flow channels and trapping chamber array are independently regulated pneumatically by two sets of integrated microfluidic valves. We successfully compress and aspirate the double emulsions, which result in transient increase and permanent decrease in oil thickness, respectively. Finally, we demonstrate the influx of calcium ions as a response of our mechanically activated artificial cell through thinning of oil. The development of a microfluidic device to mechanically activate artificial cells creates new opportunities in force-activated synthetic biology.

  2. Artificial light and nocturnal activity in gammarids

    PubMed Central

    Hölker, Franz; Heller, Stefan; Berghahn, Rüdiger

    2014-01-01

    Artificial light is gaining attention as a potential stressor to aquatic ecosystems. Artificial lights located near streams increase light levels experienced by stream invertebrates and we hypothesized light would depress night drift rates. We also hypothesized that the effect of light on drift rates would decrease over time as the invertebrates acclimated to the new light level over the course of one month’s exposure. These hypotheses were tested by placing Gammarus spp. in eight, 75 m × 1 m artificial flumes. One flume was exposed to strong (416 lx) artificial light at night. This strong light created a gradient between 4.19 and 0.04 lx over the neighboring six artificial flumes, while a control flume was completely covered with black plastic at night. Night-time light measurements taken in the Berlin area confirm that half the flumes were at light levels experienced by urban aquatic invertebrates. Surprisingly, no light treatment affected gammarid drift rates. In contrast, physical activity measurements of in situ individually caged G. roeseli showed they increased short-term activity levels in nights of complete darkness and decreased activity levels in brightly lit flumes. Both nocturnal and diurnal drift increased, and day drift rates were unexpectadly higher than nocturnal drift. PMID:24688857

  3. Artificial light and nocturnal activity in gammarids.

    PubMed

    Perkin, Elizabeth K; Hölker, Franz; Heller, Stefan; Berghahn, Rüdiger

    2014-01-01

    Artificial light is gaining attention as a potential stressor to aquatic ecosystems. Artificial lights located near streams increase light levels experienced by stream invertebrates and we hypothesized light would depress night drift rates. We also hypothesized that the effect of light on drift rates would decrease over time as the invertebrates acclimated to the new light level over the course of one month's exposure. These hypotheses were tested by placing Gammarus spp. in eight, 75 m × 1 m artificial flumes. One flume was exposed to strong (416 lx) artificial light at night. This strong light created a gradient between 4.19 and 0.04 lx over the neighboring six artificial flumes, while a control flume was completely covered with black plastic at night. Night-time light measurements taken in the Berlin area confirm that half the flumes were at light levels experienced by urban aquatic invertebrates. Surprisingly, no light treatment affected gammarid drift rates. In contrast, physical activity measurements of in situ individually caged G. roeseli showed they increased short-term activity levels in nights of complete darkness and decreased activity levels in brightly lit flumes. Both nocturnal and diurnal drift increased, and day drift rates were unexpectadly higher than nocturnal drift.

  4. Mechanically activated artificial cell by using microfluidics

    PubMed Central

    Ho, Kenneth K. Y.; Lee, Lap Man; Liu, Allen P.

    2016-01-01

    All living organisms sense mechanical forces. Engineering mechanosensitive artificial cell through bottom-up in vitro reconstitution offers a way to understand how mixtures of macromolecules assemble and organize into a complex system that responds to forces. We use stable double emulsion droplets (aqueous/oil/aqueous) to prototype mechanosensitive artificial cells. In order to demonstrate mechanosensation in artificial cells, we develop a novel microfluidic device that is capable of trapping double emulsions into designated chambers, followed by compression and aspiration in a parallel manner. The microfluidic device is fabricated using multilayer soft lithography technology, and consists of a control layer and a deformable flow channel. Deflections of the PDMS membrane above the main microfluidic flow channels and trapping chamber array are independently regulated pneumatically by two sets of integrated microfluidic valves. We successfully compress and aspirate the double emulsions, which result in transient increase and permanent decrease in oil thickness, respectively. Finally, we demonstrate the influx of calcium ions as a response of our mechanically activated artificial cell through thinning of oil. The development of a microfluidic device to mechanically activate artificial cells creates new opportunities in force-activated synthetic biology. PMID:27610921

  5. Mechanosignaling activation of TGFβ maintains intervertebral disc homeostasis

    PubMed Central

    Bian, Qin; Ma, Lei; Jain, Amit; Crane, Janet L; Kebaish, Khaled; Wan, Mei; Zhang, Zhengdong; Edward Guo, X; Sponseller, Paul D; Séguin, Cheryle A; Riley, Lee H; Wang, Yongjun; Cao, Xu

    2017-01-01

    Intervertebral disc (IVD) degeneration is the leading cause of disability with no disease-modifying treatment. IVD degeneration is associated with instable mechanical loading in the spine, but little is known about how mechanical stress regulates nucleus notochordal (NC) cells to maintain IVD homeostasis. Here we report that mechanical stress can result in excessive integrin αvβ6-mediated activation of transforming growth factor beta (TGFβ), decreased NC cell vacuoles, and increased matrix proteoglycan production, and results in degenerative disc disease (DDD). Knockout of TGFβ type II receptor (TβRII) or integrin αv in the NC cells inhibited functional activity of postnatal NC cells and also resulted in DDD under mechanical loading. Administration of RGD peptide, TGFβ, and αvβ6-neutralizing antibodies attenuated IVD degeneration. Thus, integrin-mediated activation of TGFβ plays a critical role in mechanical signaling transduction to regulate IVD cell function and homeostasis. Manipulation of this signaling pathway may be a potential therapeutic target to modify DDD. PMID:28392965

  6. Artificial total disc replacement versus fusion for the cervical spine: a systematic review

    PubMed Central

    Winkler, Roman; Mad, Philipp

    2010-01-01

    Cervical total disc replacement (CTDR) has been increasingly used as an alternative to fusion surgery in patients with pain or neurological symptoms in the cervical spine who do not respond to non-surgical treatment. A systematic literature review has been conducted to evaluate whether CTDR is more efficacious and safer than fusion or non-surgical treatment. Published evidence up to date is summarised qualitatively according to the GRADE methodology. After 2 years of follow-up, studies demonstrated statistically significant non-inferiority of CTDR versus fusion with respect to the composite outcome ‘overall success’. Single patient relevant endpoints such as pain, disability or quality of life improved in both groups with no superiority of CTDR. Both technologies showed similar complication rates. No evidence is available for the comparison between CTDR and non-surgical treatment. In the long run improvement of health outcomes seems to be similar in CTDR and fusion, however, the study quality is often severely limited. After both interventions, many patients still face problems. A difficulty per se is the correct diagnosis and indication for surgical interventions in the cervical spine. CTDR is no better than fusion in alleviating symptoms related to disc degeneration in the cervical spine. In the context of limited resources, a net cost comparison may be sensible. So far, CTDR is not recommended for routine use. As many trials are ongoing, re-evaluation at a later date will be required. Future research needs to address the relative effectiveness between CTDR and conservative treatment. PMID:20936484

  7. The kinematics of anterior cervical discectomy and fusion versus artificial cervical disc: a pilot study.

    PubMed

    Rabin, Doron; Pickett, Gwynedd E; Bisnaire, Lynn; Duggal, Neil

    2007-09-01

    Anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) for the management of cervical spondylosis may contribute to further degenerative changes at adjacent levels secondary to abnormal spinal motion. Insertion of a Bryan Cervical Disc (AD) (Medtronic Sofamor Danek, Memphis, TN) may prevent this accelerated degeneration. This retrospective study compares the in vivo x-ray cervical spine kinematics in patients with ACDF and AD. Ten patients with single-level AD were matched to 10 patients with single-level ACDF based on age and sex. Lateral neutral, flexion and extension cervical x-rays were obtained preoperatively and at regular intervals up to 24 months postoperatively. Kinematic parameters, including range of motion, anteroposterior translation, and disc height, were assessed for all cervical functional spinal units using quantitative motion analysis software. Changes in these parameters were compared between matched patients from both groups using paired Student's t tests. The range of motion at the operated level was greater in the AD group compared with the ACDF group at early (6.9 versus 0.89 degrees, P < 0.01) and late (8.4 versus 0.53 degrees, P < 0.01) follow-up evaluations. Translation was greater at the operated level in patients with AD at late follow-up (6.8 versus 0.8%, P < 0.03) evaluation. No significant between-group kinematic differences were seen at adjacent levels. Patients with AD and those with ACDF demonstrated similar in vivo adjacent level kinematics within the first 24 months after anterior cervical decompression.

  8. Crack orientation and depth estimation in a low-pressure turbine disc using a phased array ultrasonic transducer and an artificial neural network.

    PubMed

    Yang, Xiaoxia; Chen, Shili; Jin, Shijiu; Chang, Wenshuang

    2013-09-13

    Stress corrosion cracks (SCC) in low-pressure steam turbine discs are serious hidden dangers to production safety in the power plants, and knowing the orientation and depth of the initial cracks is essential for the evaluation of the crack growth rate, propagation direction and working life of the turbine disc. In this paper, a method based on phased array ultrasonic transducer and artificial neural network (ANN), is proposed to estimate both the depth and orientation of initial cracks in the turbine discs. Echo signals from cracks with different depths and orientations were collected by a phased array ultrasonic transducer, and the feature vectors were extracted by wavelet packet, fractal technology and peak amplitude methods. The radial basis function (RBF) neural network was investigated and used in this application. The final results demonstrated that the method presented was efficient in crack estimation tasks.

  9. Crack Orientation and Depth Estimation in a Low-Pressure Turbine Disc Using a Phased Array Ultrasonic Transducer and an Artificial Neural Network

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Xiaoxia; Chen, Shili; Jin, Shijiu; Chang, Wenshuang

    2013-01-01

    Stress corrosion cracks (SCC) in low-pressure steam turbine discs are serious hidden dangers to production safety in the power plants, and knowing the orientation and depth of the initial cracks is essential for the evaluation of the crack growth rate, propagation direction and working life of the turbine disc. In this paper, a method based on phased array ultrasonic transducer and artificial neural network (ANN), is proposed to estimate both the depth and orientation of initial cracks in the turbine discs. Echo signals from cracks with different depths and orientations were collected by a phased array ultrasonic transducer, and the feature vectors were extracted by wavelet packet, fractal technology and peak amplitude methods. The radial basis function (RBF) neural network was investigated and used in this application. The final results demonstrated that the method presented was efficient in crack estimation tasks. PMID:24064602

  10. Dynamic foraminal dimensions during neck extension and rotation in fusion and artificial disc replacement: an observational study.

    PubMed

    Yeni, Yener N; Baumer, Timothy; Oravec, Daniel; Basheer, Azam; McDonald, Colin P; Bey, Michael J; Bartol, Stephen W; Chang, Victor

    2017-09-04

    Changes in the dimensions of the cervical neural foramina (CNF) are considered to be a key factor in nerve root compression and development of cervical radiculopathy. However, to what extent foraminal geometry differs between patients who underwent anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) and those who underwent total disc arthroplasty with an artificial disc (AD) during physiological motion is largely unknown. The objective of this study is to compare CNF dimensions during physiological neck motion between ACDF and AD. This is a retrospective comparative analysis of prospectively collected, consecutive, non-randomized series of patients at a single institution. A total of 16 single-level C5-C6 ACDF (4 males, 12 females; 28-71 years) and 7 single-level C5-C6 cervical arthroplasty patients (3 males, 4 females; 38-57 years), at least 12 months after surgery (23.6±6.8 months) were included. Patient demographics, preoperative magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)-based measurements of cervical spine degeneration, and 2-year postoperative measurements of dynamic foraminal geometry were the outcome measures. Biplane x-ray images were acquired during axial neck rotation and neck extension. A computed tomography scan was also acquired from C3 to the first thoracic vertebrae. The subaxial cervical vertebrae (C3-C7) were reconstructed into three-dimensional (3D) bone models for use with model-based tracking. Foraminal height (FH) was calculated as the 3D distance between the superior point of the inferior pedicle and the inferior point of the superior pedicle using custom software. Foraminal width (FW) was similarly calculated as the 3D distance between the anterolateral aspect of the superior vertebral body inferior notch and the posterolateral aspect of the inferior vertebral body superior notch. Dynamic foraminal dimensions were quantified as the minimum (FH.Min, FW.Min), the range (FH.Range, FW.Range), and the median (FH.Med, FW.Med) of each trial and then averaged

  11. Cervical artificial disc replacement versus fusion in the cervical spine: a systematic review comparing multilevel versus single-level surgery

    PubMed Central

    Kepler, Christopher K.; Brodt, Erika D.; Dettori, Joseph R.; Albert, Todd J.

    2012-01-01

    Study design: Systematic review. Clinical questions: What is the effectiveness of multilevel cervical artificial disc replacement (C-ADR) compared with multilevel fusion with respect to pain and functional outcomes, and are the two procedures comparable in terms of safety? What is the effectiveness of multilevel C-ADR compared with single-level C-ADR with respect to pain and functional outcomes, and are the two procedures comparable in terms of safety? Methods: A systematic review was undertaken for articles published up to October 2011. Electronic databases and reference lists of key articles were searched to identify studies comparing multilevel C-ADR with multilevel anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) or comparing multilevel C-ADR with single-level C-ADR. Studies which compared these procedures in the lumbar or thoracic spine or that reported alignment outcomes only were excluded. Two independent reviewers assessed the strength of evidence using the GRADE criteria and disagreements were resolved by consensus. Results: Two studies compared multilevel C-ADR with multilevel ACDF. While both reported improved Neck Disability Index (NDI) and Short-Form 36 (SF-36) scores after C-ADR compared with ACDF, only one study reported statistically significant results. Seven studies compared single-level C-ADR with multilevel C-ADR. Results were similar in terms of overall success, NDI and SF-36 scores, and patient satisfaction. There is discrepant information regarding rates of heterotopic ossification; dysphagia rate may be higher in multilevel C-ADR. Conclusions: The literature suggests that outcomes are at least similar for multilevel C-ADR and ACDF and may favor C-ADR. Future studies are necessary before firm recommendations can be made favoring one treatment strategy. Multilevel C-ADR seems to have similar results to single-level C-ADR but may have higher rates of heterotopic ossification and dysphagia. PMID:23236310

  12. Cervical artificial disc replacement versus fusion in the cervical spine: a systematic review comparing multilevel versus single-level surgery.

    PubMed

    Kepler, Christopher K; Brodt, Erika D; Dettori, Joseph R; Albert, Todd J

    2012-02-01

     Systematic review.Clinical questions: What is the effectiveness of multilevel cervical artificial disc replacement (C-ADR) compared with multilevel fusion with respect to pain and functional outcomes, and are the two procedures comparable in terms of safety? What is the effectiveness of multilevel C-ADR compared with single-level C-ADR with respect to pain and functional outcomes, and are the two procedures comparable in terms of safety?  A systematic review was undertaken for articles published up to October 2011. Electronic databases and reference lists of key articles were searched to identify studies comparing multilevel C-ADR with multilevel anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) or comparing multilevel C-ADR with single-level C-ADR. Studies which compared these procedures in the lumbar or thoracic spine or that reported alignment outcomes only were excluded. Two independent reviewers assessed the strength of evidence using the GRADE criteria and disagreements were resolved by consensus.  Two studies compared multilevel C-ADR with multilevel ACDF. While both reported improved Neck Disability Index (NDI) and Short-Form 36 (SF-36) scores after C-ADR compared with ACDF, only one study reported statistically significant results. Seven studies compared single-level C-ADR with multilevel C-ADR. RESULTS were similar in terms of overall success, NDI and SF-36 scores, and patient satisfaction. There is discrepant information regarding rates of heterotopic ossification; dysphagia rate may be higher in multilevel C-ADR.  The literature suggests that outcomes are at least similar for multilevel C-ADR and ACDF and may favor C-ADR. Future studies are necessary before firm recommendations can be made favoring one treatment strategy. Multilevel C-ADR seems to have similar results to single-level C-ADR but may have higher rates of heterotopic ossification and dysphagia.

  13. Quality of systematic reviews: an example of studies comparing artificial disc replacement with fusion in the cervical spine.

    PubMed

    Tashani, Osama A; El-Tumi, Hanan; Aneiba, Khaled

    2015-01-01

    Cervical artificial disc replacement (C-ADR) is now an alternative to anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF). Many studies have evaluated the efficacy of C-ADR compared with ACDF. This led to a series of systematic reviews and meta-analyses to evaluate the evidence of the superiority of one intervention against the other. The aim of the study presented here was to evaluate the quality of these reviews and meta-analyses. Medline via Ovid, Embase, and Cochrane Library were searched using the keywords: (total disk replacement, prosthesis, implantation, discectomy, and arthroplasty) AND (cervical vertebrae, cervical spine, and spine) AND (systematic reviews, reviews, and meta-analysis). Screening and data extraction were conducted by two reviewers independently. Two reviewers then assessed the quality of the selected reviews and meta-analysis using 11-item AMSTAR score which is a validated measurement tool to assess the methodological quality of systematic reviews. Screening of full reports of 46 relevant abstracts resulted in the selection of 15 systematic reviews and/or meta-analyses as eligible for this study. The two reviewers' inter-rater agreement level was high as indicated by kappa of >0.72. The AMSTAR score of the reviews ranged from 3 to 11. Only one study (a Cochrane review) scored 100% (AMSTAR 11). Five studies scored below (AMSTAR 5) indicating low-quality reviews. The most significant drawbacks of reviews of a score below 5 were not using an extensive search strategy, failure to use the scientific quality of the included studies appropriately in formulating a conclusion, not assessing publication bias, and not reporting the excluded studies. With a significant exception of a Cochrane review, the methodological quality of systematic reviews evaluating the evidence of C-ADR versus ACDF has to be improved.

  14. Improving artificial metalloenzymes' activity by optimizing electron transfer.

    PubMed

    Hu, Cheng; Yu, Yang; Wang, Jiangyun

    2017-04-11

    While many artificial metalloenzymes have been reported, and are proposed to be highly promising for energy, environmental and medical applications, few could match the turnover rate (TOR) and turnover number (TON) of natural enzymes. Since electron transfer is oftentimes the rate-determining step, optimizing the electron transfer efficiency is an effective approach to significantly enhance artificial enzymes' activity. In this article, we review the recent progress in improving artificial metalloenzymes' activity by optimizing electron transfer.

  15. Cost Utility Analysis of the Cervical Artificial Disc vs Fusion for the Treatment of 2-Level Symptomatic Degenerative Disc Disease: 5-Year Follow-up

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Zhuo; Nunley, Pierce; Stone, Marcus B.; Lee, Darrin; Kim, Kee D.

    2016-01-01

    BACKGROUND: The cervical total disc replacement (cTDR) was developed to treat cervical degenerative disc disease while preserving motion. OBJECTIVE: Cost-effectiveness of this intervention was established by looking at 2-year follow-up, and this update reevaluates our analysis over 5 years. METHODS: Data were derived from a randomized trial of 330 patients. Data from the 12-Item Short Form Health Survey were transformed into utilities by using the SF-6D algorithm. Costs were calculated by extracting diagnosis-related group codes and then applying 2014 Medicare reimbursement rates. A Markov model evaluated quality-adjusted life years (QALYs) for both treatment groups. Univariate and multivariate sensitivity analyses were conducted to test the stability of the model. The model adopted both societal and health system perspectives and applied a 3% annual discount rate. RESULTS: The cTDR costs $1687 more than anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) over 5 years. In contrast, cTDR had $34 377 less productivity loss compared with ACDF. There was a significant difference in the return-to-work rate (81.6% compared with 65.4% for cTDR and ACDF, respectively; P = .029). From a societal perspective, the incremental cost-effective ratio (ICER) for cTDR was −$165 103 per QALY. From a health system perspective, the ICER for cTDR was $8518 per QALY. In the sensitivity analysis, the ICER for cTDR remained below the US willingness-to-pay threshold of $50 000 per QALY in all scenarios (−$225 816 per QALY to $22 071 per QALY). CONCLUSION: This study is the first to report the comparative cost-effectiveness of cTDR vs ACDF for 2-level degenerative disc disease at 5 years. The authors conclude that, because of the negative ICER, cTDR is the dominant modality. ABBREVIATIONS: ACDF, anterior cervical discectomy and fusion AWP, average wholesale price CE, cost-effectiveness CEA, cost-effectiveness analysis CPT, Current Procedural Terminology cTDR, cervical total disc

  16. Synthesis of a heterogeneous artificial metallolipase with chimeric catalytic activity.

    PubMed

    Filice, M; Romero, O; Gutiérrez-Fernández, J; de Las Rivas, B; Hermoso, J A; Palomo, J M

    2015-06-07

    A solid-phase strategy using lipase as a biomolecular scaffold to produce a large amount of Cu(2+)-metalloenzyme is proposed here. The application of this protocol on different 3D cavities of the enzyme allows creating a heterogeneous artificial metallolipase showing chimeric catalytic activity. The artificial catalyst was assessed in Diels-Alder cycloaddition reactions and cascade reactions showing excellent catalytic properties.

  17. Artificial Syntactic Violations Activate Broca's Region

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Petersson, Karl Magnus; Forkstam, Christian; Ingvar, Martin

    2004-01-01

    In the present study, using event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging, we investigated a group of participants on a grammaticality classification task after they had been exposed to well-formed consonant strings generated from an artificial regular grammar. We used an implicit acquisition paradigm in which the participants were exposed…

  18. Artificial Syntactic Violations Activate Broca's Region

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Petersson, Karl Magnus; Forkstam, Christian; Ingvar, Martin

    2004-01-01

    In the present study, using event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging, we investigated a group of participants on a grammaticality classification task after they had been exposed to well-formed consonant strings generated from an artificial regular grammar. We used an implicit acquisition paradigm in which the participants were exposed…

  19. Contractile activity is required for Z-disc sarcomere maturation in vivo.

    PubMed

    Geach, Timothy J; Hirst, Elizabeth M A; Zimmerman, Lyle B

    2015-05-01

    Sarcomere structure underpins structural integrity, signaling, and force transmission in the muscle. In embryos of the frog Xenopus tropicalis, muscle contraction begins even while sarcomerogenesis is ongoing. To determine whether contractile activity plays a role in sarcomere formation in vivo, chemical tools were used to block acto-myosin contraction in embryos of the frog X. tropicalis, and Z-disc assembly was characterized in the paralyzed dicky ticker mutant. Confocal and ultrastructure analysis of paralyzed embryos showed delayed Z-disc formation and defects in thick filament organization. These results suggest a previously undescribed role for contractility in sarcomere maturation in vivo.

  20. Textured bearing surface in artificial joints to reduce macrophage activation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakanishi, Yoshitaka; Nishi, Naoki; Chikaura, Hiroto; Nakashima, Yuta; Miura, Hiromasa; Higaki, Hidehiko; Mizuta, Hiroshi; Iwamoto, Yukihide; Fujiwara, Yukio; Komohara, Yoshihiro; Takeya, Motohiro

    2015-12-01

    Micro slurry-jet erosion has been proposed as a precision machining technique for the bearing surfaces of artificial joints in order to reduce the total amount of polyethylene wear and to enlarge the size of the wear debris. The micro slurry-jet erosion method is a wet blasting technique which uses alumina particles as the abrasive medium along with compressed air and water to create an ideal surface. Pin-on-disc wear tests with multidirectional sliding motion on the textured surface of a \\text{Co}-\\text{Cr}-\\text{Mo} alloy counterface for polyethylene resulted in both a reduction of wear as well as enlargement of the polyethylene debris size. In this study, primary human peripheral blood mononuclear phagocytes were incubated with the debris, and it was elucidated that the wear debris generated on the textured surface regulated secretion of the proinflammatory cytokines IL-6 and TNF-α, indicating a reduction in the induced tissue reaction and joint loosening.

  1. Patterns recognition of electric brain activity using artificial neural networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Musatov, V. Yu.; Pchelintseva, S. V.; Runnova, A. E.; Hramov, A. E.

    2017-04-01

    An approach for the recognition of various cognitive processes in the brain activity in the perception of ambiguous images. On the basis of developed theoretical background and the experimental data, we propose a new classification of oscillating patterns in the human EEG by using an artificial neural network approach. After learning of the artificial neural network reliably identified cube recognition processes, for example, left-handed or right-oriented Necker cube with different intensity of their edges, construct an artificial neural network based on Perceptron architecture and demonstrate its effectiveness in the pattern recognition of the EEG in the experimental.

  2. Antiurolithiatic activity of Abelmoschus moschatus seed extracts against zinc disc implantation-induced urolithiasis in rats.

    PubMed

    Pawar, Anil T; Vyawahare, Niraj S

    2016-03-01

    The commonly used techniques for removing renal calculi are associated with the risk of acute renal injury and increase in stone recurrence which indicates an urgent need for alternate therapy. The aim was to evaluate the antiurolithiatic activity of Abelmoschus moschatus seed extracts in rats. Urolithiasis was induced by surgical implantations of zinc disc in the urinary bladders of rats. Upon postsurgical recovery, different doses of chloroform (CAM) and methanolic (MAM) extracts of A. moschatus seeds (viz., 100, 200 and 400 mg/kg body weight) were administered to disc implanted rats for the period of 7 days by the oral route. Antiurolithiatic activity was evaluated by measuring various dimensions of stones and estimating levels of various biomarkers in serum and urine samples. A significant decrease in urinary output was observed in disc implanted animals, which was prevented by the treatment with extracts. Supplementation with extracts caused significant improvement in glomerular filtration rate and urinary total protein excretion. The elevated levels of serum creatinine, uric acid, and blood urea nitrogen were also prevented by the extracts. The extracts significantly reduced deposition of calculi deposition around the implanted disc. This antiurolithiatic potential is observed at all doses (100, 200, and 400 mg/kg) of MAM, whereas only higher dose (400 mg/kg) of CAM showed significant antiurolithiatic potential. The extracts of A. moschatus seeds possessed significant antiurolithiatic activity. The possible mechanism underlying this effect is mediated collectively through diuretic, antioxidant, and free-radical scavenging effects of the plant.

  3. Utilization trends of cervical artificial disc replacement during the FDA investigational device exemption clinical trials compared to anterior cervical fusion.

    PubMed

    Qureshi, Sheeraz A; Koehler, Steven M; Lu, Young; Cho, Samuel; Hecht, Andrew C

    2013-12-01

    While anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) is the gold standard surgical treatment for cervical disc disease, concerns regarding adjacent segment degeneration lead to the development of cervical disc arthroplasty (CDA). This study compares the utilization trends of CDA versus ACDF during the period of the Food and Drug Administration Investigational Device Exemption clinical trials from 2004 to 2007. The Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project Nationwide Inpatient Sample database was used to identify CDA and ACDF procedures performed in the USA between 2004 and 2007. The prevalence of CDA and ACDF procedures was estimated and stratified by age, sex, diagnosis, census region, payor class, and hospital characteristics. The average length of hospital stay, total charges, and costs were also estimated. The number of CDA surgeries significantly increased annually from 2004 to 2007 and mostly took place at urban non-teaching hospitals. There were no regional differences between CDA and ACDF utilization. There was no difference between sex or admission type between CDA and ACDF patients. ACDF patients were older and had more diabetes, hypertension, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. CDA patients were more likely to be discharged home and had shorter hospital stays but had a higher rate of deep venous thrombosis than ACDF patients. Significantly more CDA patients had private insurance while more ACDF patients had Medicare. The average cost was higher for ACDF than CDA. While ACDF dominated surgical intervention for cervical disc disease during the trial period, CDA utilization increased at a significantly greater rate suggesting rapid early adoption.

  4. Changes in Calcium-ATPase Activity Associated with the Washing (Ageing) of Potato Tuber Discs.

    PubMed

    Fakhrai, H; Hall, J L

    1984-11-01

    ATPase activity in cell wall and microsomal fractions from fresh and washed potato tuber discs was measured. The activity was markedly stimulated by Ca(2+) whereas K(+) and Na(+) had little effect. The Ca(2+)-ATPase increased with washing, particularly in the cell wall fractions and in the low density fractions after discontinuous sucrose gradient centrifugation. The activities of succinic dehydrogenase and cytochrome-c-oxidase also increased with disc washing, although activity was highest in the denser regions of the gradient. A fine structural study of fresh and washed tissues revealed a pronounced increase in the membrane profile concentration of the endoplasmic reticulum and mitochondria after ageing for 24 hours. Copyright © 1984 Gustav Fischer Verlag, Stuttgart. Published by Elsevier GmbH.. All rights reserved.

  5. Wear studies on ZrO2-filled PEEK as coating bearing materials for artificial cervical discs of Ti6Al4V.

    PubMed

    Song, Jian; Liu, Yuhong; Liao, Zhenhua; Wang, Song; Tyagi, Rajnesh; Liu, Weiqiang

    2016-12-01

    Polyetheretherketone (PEEK) and its composite coatings are believed to be the potential candidates' bio-implant materials. However, these coatings have not yet been used on the surface of titanium-based orthopedics and joint products and very few investigations on the tribological characteristics could be found in the published literature till date. In this study, the wettabilities, composition and micro-hardness were characterized using contact angle measurement, scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and hardness tester. The tribological tests were conducted using a ball-on-disc contact pair under 25% newborn calf serum (NCS) lubricated condition. For comparison, bare Ti6Al4V was studied. The obtained results revealed that those PEEK/ZrO2 composite coatings could improve the tribological properties of Ti6Al4V significantly. Adhesive wear and mild abrasive wear might be the dominant wear and failure mechanisms for PEEK/ZrO2 composite coatings in NCS lubricated condition. After comprehensive evaluation in the present study, 5wt.% ZrO2 nanoparticles filled PEEK coating displayed the optimum tribological characteristics and could be taken as a potential candidate for the bearing material of artificial cervical disc.

  6. A new way to measure supermassive black hole spin in accretion disc-dominated active galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Done, Chris; Jin, C.; Middleton, M.; Ward, Martin

    2013-09-01

    We show that disc continuum fitting can be used to constrain black hole spin in a subclass of narrow-line Seyfert 1 (NLS1) active galactic nuclei as their low mass and high mass accretion rate means that the disc peaks at energies just below the soft X-ray bandpass. We apply the technique to the NLS1 PG1244+026, where the optical/UV/X-ray spectrum is consistent with being dominated by a standard disc component. This gives a best estimate for black hole spin which is low, with a firm upper limit of a* <0.86. This contrasts with the recent X-ray determinations of (close to) maximal black hole spin in other NLS1 based on relativistic smearing of the iron profile. While our data on PG1244+026 do not have sufficient statistics at high energy to give a good measure of black hole spin from the iron line profile, cosmological simulations predict that black holes with similar masses have similar growth histories and so should have similar spins. This suggests that there is a problem either in our understanding of disc spectra, or/and X-ray reflection or/and the evolution of black hole spin.

  7. Use of urea filter paper disc to detect urease activity in Enterobacteriaceae by multipoint replication techniques.

    PubMed

    Winter, D B; McDermott, S N

    1990-09-01

    A new method of detecting urease activity in Enterobacteriaceae was developed. An 8.5 cm filter paper disc impregnated with 20% urea and 0.5% bromocresol purple was placed on the surface of a glucose fermentation plate after inoculation with a multipoint replicator and overnight incubation. This method was compared with the commercially prepared Mast urea agar (Multipoint) and Fuscoe's Urea Plate Medium. A total of 240 routine isolates of Enterobacteriaceae were tested for urease activity using the three methods. Sixty five isolates were positive by the three methods while 33 isolates gave differing results. The urea disc method was more sensitive for detecting urease activity in isolates of Klebsiella species, Morganella morganii, and Yersinia enterocolitica. It also overcame the problem associated with the other two media of diffusion of alkali end products through the medium.

  8. Use of urea filter paper disc to detect urease activity in Enterobacteriaceae by multipoint replication techniques.

    PubMed Central

    Winter, D B; McDermott, S N

    1990-01-01

    A new method of detecting urease activity in Enterobacteriaceae was developed. An 8.5 cm filter paper disc impregnated with 20% urea and 0.5% bromocresol purple was placed on the surface of a glucose fermentation plate after inoculation with a multipoint replicator and overnight incubation. This method was compared with the commercially prepared Mast urea agar (Multipoint) and Fuscoe's Urea Plate Medium. A total of 240 routine isolates of Enterobacteriaceae were tested for urease activity using the three methods. Sixty five isolates were positive by the three methods while 33 isolates gave differing results. The urea disc method was more sensitive for detecting urease activity in isolates of Klebsiella species, Morganella morganii, and Yersinia enterocolitica. It also overcame the problem associated with the other two media of diffusion of alkali end products through the medium. PMID:2212071

  9. Cervical artificial disc replacement versus fusion in the cervical spine: a systematic review comparing long-term follow-up results from two FDA trials

    PubMed Central

    Mummaneni, Praveen V.; Amin, Beejal Y.; Wu, Jau-Ching; Brodt, Erika D.; Dettori, Joseph R.; Sasso, Rick C.

    2012-01-01

    Study design: Systematic review. Clinical question: Does single-level unconstrained, semiconstrained, or fully constrained cervical artificial disc replacement (C-ADR) improve health outcomes compared with single-level anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) in the long-term? Methods: A systematic review was undertaken for articles published up to October 2011. Electronic databases and reference lists of key articles were searched to identify US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) studies reporting long-term (≥ 48 months) follow-up results of C-ADR compared with ACDF. Non-FDA trials and FDA trials reporting outcomes at short-term or mid-term follow-up periods were excluded. Two independent reviewers assessed the strength of evidence using the GRADE criteria and disagreements were resolved by consensus. Results: Two FDA trials reporting outcomes following C-ADR (Bryan disc, Prestige disc) versus ACDF at follow-up periods of 48 months and 60 months were found (follow-up rates are 68.7% [318/463] and 50.1% [271/541], respectively). Patients in the C-ADR group showed a higher rate of overall success, greater improvements in Neck Disability Index, neck and arm pain scores, and SF-36 PhysicalComponent Scores at long-term follow-up compared with those in the ACDF group. The rate of adjacent segment disease was less in the C-ADR group versus the ACDF group at 60 months (2.9% vs 4.9%). Normal segmental motion was maintained in the C-ADR group. Furthermore, rates of revision and supplemental fixation surgical procedures were lower in the arthroplasty group. Conclusions: C-ADR is a viable treatment option for cervical herniated disc/spondylosis with radiculopathy resulting in improved clinical outcomes, maintenance of normal segmental motion, and low rates of subsequent surgical procedures at 4 to 5 years follow-up. More studies with long-term follow-up are warranted. PMID:23236315

  10. Sporting activity following discectomy for lumbar disc herniation.

    PubMed

    Dollinger, Verena; Obwegeser, Alois A; Gabl, Michael; Lackner, Peter; Koller, Michael; Galiano, Klaus

    2008-08-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate to what extent patients could resume physical activity following surgery for herniated lumbar disks. We analyzed a cohort of 1003 patients who underwent lumbar spine surgery within 1 year. Out of this cohort, 93 patients were selected according to our inclusion criteria (age 20-35 years, mediolateral single level disk herniation, no comorbidity at the lumbar spine, and treatment with conventional subtotal diskectomy). This group was evaluated after a minimum follow-up of 28 months in a telephone questionnaire; participants were questioned about pre- and postoperative physical activities. The questionnaire was answered by 67 patients. Twenty-six patients were lost to follow-up because they had relocated. The follow-up group had a mean age of 30 years. Five patients underwent a second procedure due to recurrent disk herniation. All patients showed a pain reduction. At follow-up, no patient needed constant pain medication. Eighty-two percent of the patients were pain free during practicing sports. Sixty-two patients performed some type of sport after surgery. Concerning the type and frequency of physical activities, no significant change between pre- and postoperative behavior occurred. The 5 patients with recurrent disk herniation did not behave differently. Single-level lumbar disk surgery does not limit or compromise sportive activity in young people.

  11. Paraspinal muscle activation in accordance with mechanoreceptors in the intervertebral discs.

    PubMed

    Kim, Young Eun; Choi, Hae Won

    2013-02-01

    Paraspinal muscle forces were derived computationally based on the hypothesis that the intervertebral disc has a transducer function and the muscle is activated according to a sensor-driving control mechanism. A three-dimensional finite element model of the musculoskeletal system, which consisted of a detailed whole lumbar spine, pelvis, simplified trunk model, and muscles, was developed and combined with an optimization technique to calculate muscle forces in isometric forward flexed and erect standing postures. Minimization of deviations in the nucleus pressure and averaged tensile stress in the annulus fibers at five discs was used for muscle force calculations. The results indicated that all the muscles were properly activated to maintain posture and stabilize the lumbar spine. The nucleus pressure difference was decreased during the iterative calculations and its resulting value at the L4/L5 level was consistent with in vivo measurements. Muscle activation produced vertebra motion, which resulted in a relatively uniform stress distribution in the intervertebral discs. This can minimize the risk of injury at a specific level and increase the ability of the spine to sustain a load.

  12. Antiurolithiatic activity of Abelmoschus moschatus seed extracts against zinc disc implantation-induced urolithiasis in rats

    PubMed Central

    Pawar, Anil T.; Vyawahare, Niraj S.

    2016-01-01

    Background: The commonly used techniques for removing renal calculi are associated with the risk of acute renal injury and increase in stone recurrence which indicates an urgent need for alternate therapy. Objectives: The aim was to evaluate the antiurolithiatic activity of Abelmoschus moschatus seed extracts in rats. Materials and Methods: Urolithiasis was induced by surgical implantations of zinc disc in the urinary bladders of rats. Upon postsurgical recovery, different doses of chloroform (CAM) and methanolic (MAM) extracts of A. moschatus seeds (viz., 100, 200 and 400 mg/kg body weight) were administered to disc implanted rats for the period of 7 days by the oral route. Antiurolithiatic activity was evaluated by measuring various dimensions of stones and estimating levels of various biomarkers in serum and urine samples. Results: A significant decrease in urinary output was observed in disc implanted animals, which was prevented by the treatment with extracts. Supplementation with extracts caused significant improvement in glomerular filtration rate and urinary total protein excretion. The elevated levels of serum creatinine, uric acid, and blood urea nitrogen were also prevented by the extracts. The extracts significantly reduced deposition of calculi deposition around the implanted disc. This antiurolithiatic potential is observed at all doses (100, 200, and 400 mg/kg) of MAM, whereas only higher dose (400 mg/kg) of CAM showed significant antiurolithiatic potential. Conclusion: The extracts of A. moschatus seeds possessed significant antiurolithiatic activity. The possible mechanism underlying this effect is mediated collectively through diuretic, antioxidant, and free-radical scavenging effects of the plant. PMID:27057124

  13. Electrical activation of artificial muscles containing polyacrylonitrile gel fibers.

    PubMed

    Schreyer, H B; Gebhart, N; Kim, K J; Shahinpoor, M

    2000-01-01

    Gel fibers made from polyacrylonitrile (PAN) are known to elongate and contract when immersed in caustic and acidic solutions, respectively. The amount of contraction for these pH-activated fibers is 50% or greater, and the strength of these fibers is shown to be comparable to that of human muscle. Despite these attributes, the need of strong acids and bases for actuation has limited the use of PAN gel fibers as linear actuators or artificial muscles. Increasing the conductivity by depositing platinum on the fibers or combining the fibers with graphite fibers has allowed for electrical activation of artificial muscles containing gel fibers when placed in an electrochemical cell. The electrolysis of water in such a cell produces hydrogen ions at an artificial muscle anode, thus locally decreasing the pH and causing the muscle to contract. Reversing the electric field allows the PAN muscle to elongate. A greater than 40% contraction in artificial muscle length in less than 10 min is observed when it is placed as an electrode in a 10 mM NaCl electrolyte solution and connected to a 10 V power supply. These results indicate potential in developing electrically activated PAN muscles and linear actuators, which would be much more applicable than chemically activated muscles.

  14. Long-term clinical and radiographic outcomes of the Prestige LP artificial cervical disc replacement at 2 levels: results from a prospective randomized controlled clinical trial.

    PubMed

    Lanman, Todd H; Burkus, J Kenneth; Dryer, Randall G; Gornet, Matthew F; McConnell, Jeffrey; Hodges, Scott D

    2017-07-01

    OBJECTIVE The aim of this study was to assess long-term clinical safety and effectiveness in patients undergoing anterior cervical surgery using the Prestige LP artificial disc replacement (ADR) prosthesis to treat degenerative cervical spine disease at 2 adjacent levels compared with anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF). METHODS A prospective, randomized, controlled, multicenter FDA-approved clinical trial was conducted at 30 US centers, comparing the low-profile titanium ceramic composite-based Prestige LP ADR (n = 209) at 2 levels with ACDF (n = 188). Clinical and radiographic evaluations were completed preoperatively, intraoperatively, and at regular postoperative intervals to 84 months. The primary end point was overall success, a composite variable that included key safety and efficacy considerations. RESULTS At 84 months, the Prestige LP ADR demonstrated statistical superiority over fusion for overall success (observed rate 78.6% vs 62.7%; posterior probability of superiority [PPS] = 99.8%), Neck Disability Index success (87.0% vs 75.6%; PPS = 99.3%), and neurological success (91.6% vs 82.1%; PPS = 99.0%). All other study effectiveness measures were at least noninferior for ADR compared with ACDF. There was no statistically significant difference in the overall rate of implant-related or implant/surgical procedure-related adverse events up to 84 months (26.6% and 27.7%, respectively). However, the Prestige LP group had fewer serious (Grade 3 or 4) implant- or implant/surgical procedure-related adverse events (3.2% vs 7.2%, log hazard ratio [LHR] and 95% Bayesian credible interval [95% BCI] -1.19 [-2.29 to -0.15]). Patients in the Prestige LP group also underwent statistically significantly fewer second surgical procedures at the index levels (4.2%) than the fusion group (14.7%) (LHR -1.29 [95% BCI -2.12 to -0.46]). Angular range of motion at superior- and inferior-treated levels on average was maintained in the Prestige LP ADR group to 84 months

  15. Bulges and discs in the local Universe. Linking the galaxy structure to star formation activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morselli, L.; Popesso, P.; Erfanianfar, G.; Concas, A.

    2017-01-01

    We use a sample built on the SDSS DR7 catalogue and the bulge-disc decomposition of Simard et al. (2011, ApJS, 196, 11) to study how the bulge and disc components contribute to the parent galaxy's star formation activity, by determining its position in the star formation rate (SFR) - stellar mass (M⋆) plane at 0.02 < z < 0.1 and around the main sequence (MS) of star-forming galaxies. For this purpose, we use the bulge and disc colours as proxy for their SFRs, while the total galaxy SFR comes from Hα or D4000. We study the mean galaxy bulge-total mass ratio (B/T) as a function of the residual from the MS (ΔMS) and find that the B/T-ΔMS relation exhibits a parabola-like shape with the peak of the MS corresponding to the lowest B/Ts at any stellar mass. The lower and upper envelope of the MS are populated by galaxies with similar B/T, velocity dispersion and concentration (R90/R50) values. The mean values of such distributions indicate that the majority of the galaxies are characterised by classical bulges and not pseudo-bulges. Bulges above the MS are characterised by blue colours or, when red, by a high level of dust obscuration, thus indicating that in both cases they are actively star forming. When on the MS or below it, bulges are mostly red and dead. At stellar masses above 1010.5M⊙, bulges on the MS or in the green valley tend to be significantly redder than their counterparts in the quiescence region, despite similar levels of dust obscuration. This could be explained with different age or metallicity content, suggesting different evolutionary paths for bulges on the MS and green valley with respect to those in the quiescence region. The disc g-r colour anti-correlates at any mass with the distance from the MS, getting redder when approaching the MS lower envelope and the quiescence region. The anti-correlation flattens as a function of the stellar mass, likely due to a higher level of dust obscuration in massive SF galaxies. We conclude that the

  16. Sucrose activates human taste pathways differently from artificial sweetener.

    PubMed

    Frank, Guido K W; Oberndorfer, Tyson A; Simmons, Alan N; Paulus, Martin P; Fudge, Julie L; Yang, Tony T; Kaye, Walter H

    2008-02-15

    Animal models suggest that sucrose activates taste afferents differently than non-caloric sweeteners. Little information exists how artificial sweeteners engage central taste pathways in the human brain. We assessed sucrose and sucralose taste pleasantness across a concentration gradient in 12 healthy control women and applied 10% sucrose and matched sucralose during functional magnet resonance imaging. The results indicate that (1) both sucrose and sucralose activate functionally connected primary taste pathways; (2) taste pleasantness predicts left insula response; (3) sucrose elicits a stronger brain response in the anterior insula, frontal operculum, striatum and anterior cingulate, compared to sucralose; (4) only sucrose, but not sucralose, stimulation engages dopaminergic midbrain areas in relation to the behavioral pleasantness response. Thus, brain response distinguishes the caloric from the non-caloric sweetener, although the conscious mind could not. This could have important implications on how effective artificial sweeteners are in their ability to substitute sugar intake.

  17. Cervical anterior hybrid technique with bi-level Bryan artificial disc replacement and adjacent segment fusion for cervical myelopathy over three consecutive segments.

    PubMed

    Chen, Jiang; Xu, Lin; Jia, Yu-Song; Sun, Qi; Li, Jin-Yu; Zheng, Chen-Ying; Bai, Chun-Xiao; Yu, Qin-Sheng

    2016-05-01

    This study aimed to assess the preliminary clinical efficacy and feasibility of the hybrid technique for multilevel cervical myelopathy. Considering the many shortcomings of traditional treatment methods for multilevel cervical degenerative myelopathy, hybrid surgery (bi-level Bryan artificial disc [Medtronic Sofamor Danek, Memphis, TN, USA] replacement and anterior cervical discectomy and fusion) should be considered. Between March 2006 and November 2012, 108 patients (68 men and 40 women, average age 45years) underwent hybrid surgery. Based on the Japanese Orthopaedic Association (JOA) score, Neck Disability Index (NDI), and Odom's criteria, the clinical symptoms and neurological function before and after surgery were evaluated. Mean surgery duration was 90minutes, with average blood loss of 30mL. Mean follow-up duration was 36months. At the final follow-up, the mean JOA (± standard deviation) scores were significantly higher compared with preoperative values (15.08±1.47 versus 9.18±1.22; P<0.01); meanwhile, NDI values were markedly decreased (12.32±1.03 versus 42.68±1.83; P<0.01). Using Odom's criteria, the clinical outcomes were rated as excellent (76 patients), good (22 patients), fair (six patients), and poor (four patients). These findings indicate that the hybrid method provides an effective treatment for cervical myelopathy over three consecutive segments, ensuring a good clinical outcome. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Catalytically active nanomaterials: a promising candidate for artificial enzymes.

    PubMed

    Lin, Youhui; Ren, Jinsong; Qu, Xiaogang

    2014-04-15

    Natural enzymes, exquisite biocatalysts mediating every biological process in living organisms, are able to accelerate the rate of chemical reactions up to 10(19) times for specific substrates and reactions. However, the practical application of enzymes is often hampered by their intrinsic drawbacks, such as low operational stability, sensitivity of catalytic activity to environmental conditions, and high costs in preparation and purification. Therefore, the discovery and development of artificial enzymes is highly desired. Recently, the merging of nanotechnology with biology has ignited extensive research efforts for designing functional nanomaterials that exhibit various properties intrinsic to enzymes. As a promising candidate for artificial enzymes, catalytically active nanomaterials (nanozymes) show several advantages over natural enzymes, such as controlled synthesis in low cost, tunability in catalytic activities, as well as high stability against stringent conditions. In this Account, we focus on our recent progress in exploring and constructing such nanoparticulate artificial enzymes, including graphene oxide, graphene-hemin nanocomposites, carbon nanotubes, carbon nanodots, mesoporous silica-encapsulated gold nanoparticles, gold nanoclusters, and nanoceria. According to their structural characteristics, these enzyme mimics are categorized into three classes: carbon-, metal-, and metal-oxide-based nanomaterials. We aim to highlight the important role of catalytic nanomaterials in the fields of biomimetics. First, we provide a practical introduction to the identification of these nanozymes, the source of the enzyme-like activities, and the enhancement of activities via rational design and engineering. Then we briefly describe new or enhanced applications of certain nanozymes in biomedical diagnosis, environmental monitoring, and therapeutics. For instance, we have successfully used these biomimetic catalysts as colorimetric probes for the detection of

  19. Experimental Active Control of Automotive Disc Brake Rotor Squeal Using Dither

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    CUNEFARE, K. A.; GRAF, A. J.

    2002-02-01

    This paper presents an experimental investigation into the application of “dither” control for the active control and suppression of automobile disc brake squeal. Dither control is characterized by the application of a control effort at a frequency higher than the disturbance to be controlled. In the particular system considered here, a vibro-acoustic analysis of a disc brake system during squeal determined the acoustic squeal signature to be emanating from the brake rotor. This squeal was eliminated, and could even be prevented from occurring, through the application of a harmonic force with a frequency higher than the squeal frequency. The harmonic force was generated by a stack of piezoelectric elements placed within the brake's caliper piston. The harmonic force represented a small variation about the mean clamping force exerted by the brake upon the rotor. The high-frequency vibration in the brake system due to the action of the control system was not heard if an ultrasonic control frequency was used. More importantly, the active control system is shown to be able to prevent squeal from even occurring. This gives rise to a possible active control system integrated into the brake system of automobiles to prevent squeal.

  20. Release of cobalt and chromium ions into the serum following implantation of the metal-on-metal Maverick-type artificial lumbar disc (Medtronic Sofamor Danek).

    PubMed

    Zeh, Alexander; Planert, Michael; Siegert, Gabriele; Lattke, Peter; Held, Andreas; Hein, Werner

    2007-02-01

    Cross-sectional study of 10 patients to measure the serum levels of cobalt and chromium after TDA. To investigate the release of cobalt and chromium ions into the serum following implantation of the metal-on-metal Maverick-type artificial lumbar disc. In total hip endoprosthetics and consequently for TDA (total disc arthroplasty), metal-on-metal combinations are used with the aim of reducing wear debris. In metal-on-metal TDA the release of metal ions has until now been secondary to the main discussion. We investigated the serum cobalt and chromium concentration following implantation of 15 Maverick TDAs (monosegmental L5-S1, n = 5; bisegmental L4-L5 and L5-S1, n = 5; average age, 36.5 years). Five healthy subjects (no metal implants) acted as a control group. The measurements of the metals were carried out using the HITACHI Z-8200 AAS polarized Zeeman atomic absorption spectrometer after an average of 14.8 months. The concentrations of cobalt and chromium ions in the serum amounted on average to 4.75 microg/L (SD, 2.71) for cobalt and 1.10 microg/L (SD, 1.24) for chromium. Compared with control group, both the chromium and cobalt levels in the serum showed significant increases (Mann-Whitney U test, P = 0.0120). At follow-up,the Oswestry Disability Score was on average significantly decreased by 24.4 points (L5-S1) (t test, P < 0.05) and by 26.8 points (L4-S1) (t test, P < 0.05). The improved clinical situation is also represented by a significant decrease of the Visual Analog Pain Scale of 42.2 points after the follow-up (t test, P < 0.05). Significant systemic release of Cr/Co was proven in the serum compared with the control group. The concentrations of Cr/Co measured in the serum are similar in terms of their level to the values measured in THA metal-on-metal combinations or exceed these values given in the literature. Long-term implication of this metal exposure is unknown and should be studied further.

  1. Magnetically elevated accretion discs in active galactic nuclei: broad emission-line regions and associated star formation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Begelman, Mitchell C.; Silk, Joseph

    2017-01-01

    We propose that the accretion discs fueling active galactic nuclei (AGN) are supported vertically against gravity by a strong toroidal (φ-direction) magnetic field that develops naturally as the result of an accretion disc dynamo. The magnetic pressure elevates most of the gas carrying the accretion flow at R to large heights z ≳ 0.1R and low densities, while leaving a thin dense layer containing most of the mass - but contributing very little accretion - around the equator. We show that such a disc model leads naturally to the formation of a broad emission-line region through thermal instability. Extrapolating to larger radii, we demonstrate that local gravitational instability and associated star formation are strongly suppressed compared to standard disc models for AGN, although star formation in the equatorial zone is predicted for sufficiently high mass supply rates. This new class of accretion disc models thus appears capable of resolving two longstanding puzzles in the theory of AGN fueling: the formation of broad emission-line regions and the suppression of fragmentation thought to inhibit accretion at the required rates. We show that the disc of stars that formed in the Galactic Center a few million years ago could have resulted from an episode of magnetically elevated accretion at ≳ 0.1 of the Eddington limit.

  2. Asset Inequality and Economic Activity in Artificial Societies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kikuchi, Toshiko

    In this paper, using multi-agent simulations, the effect asset inequality has on an artificial society is analyzed. It is shown that it is possible for a sustainable society to decrease in asset inequality and at the same time increase economic activity. In sustainable societies, the asset inequality increases as the consumption tax rate is raised, and in artificial societies where the tax rate is the same, inequality increases in the society in which agents with even small a surplus undertake unselfish actions. In sustainable societies which employ both income and consumption tax, an increase in asset inequalities leads to an increase economic activity. But, in sustainable societies which levy only the income tax, this result does not necessarily hold. These results show that if economic activity is increased in sustainable societies where the consumption tax rate is raised for the fiscal stability, an inequality expansion is an acceptable consequence. However, the sustainable society with the highest economic activity is realized when only the income tax is levied. In sustainable societies which levy only the income tax, it is possible to decrease inequality while simultaneously increasing economic activity.

  3. Severe impingement of lumbar disc replacements increases the functional biological activity of polyethylene wear debris.

    PubMed

    Baxter, Ryan M; Macdonald, Daniel W; Kurtz, Steven M; Steinbeck, Marla J

    2013-06-05

    Wear, oxidation, and particularly rim impingement damage of ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene total disc replacement components have been observed following surgical revision. However, neither in vitro testing nor retrieval-based evidence has shown the effect(s) of impingement on the characteristics of polyethylene wear debris. Thus, we sought to determine (1) differences in polyethylene particle size, shape, number, or biological activity that correspond to mild or severe rim impingement and (2) in an analysis of all total disc replacements, regardless of impingement classification, whether there are correlations between the extent of regional damage and the characteristics of polyethylene wear debris. The extent of dome and rim damage was characterized for eleven retrieved polyethylene cores obtained at revision surgery after an average duration of implantation of 9.7 years (range, 4.6 to 16.1 years). Polyethylene wear debris was isolated from periprosthetic tissues with use of nitric acid and was imaged with use of environmental scanning electron microscopy. Subsequently, particle size, shape, number, biological activity, and chronic inflammation scores were determined. Grouping of particles by size ranges that represented high biological relevance (<0.1 to 1-μm particles), intermediate biological relevance (1 to 10-μm particles), and low biological relevance (>10-μm particles) revealed an increased volume fraction of particles in the <0.1 to 1-μm and 1 to 10-μm size ranges in the mild-impingement cohort as compared with the severe-impingement cohort. The increased volume fractions resulted in a higher specific biological activity per unit particle volume in the mild-impingement cohort than in the severe-impingement cohort. However, functional biological activity, which is normalized by particle volume (mm3/g of tissue), was significantly higher in the severe-impingement cohort. This increase was due to a larger volume of particles in all

  4. Severe Impingement of Lumbar Disc Replacements Increases the Functional Biological Activity of Polyethylene Wear Debris

    PubMed Central

    Baxter, Ryan M.; MacDonald, Daniel W.; Kurtz, Steven M.; Steinbeck, Marla J.

    2013-01-01

    Background: Wear, oxidation, and particularly rim impingement damage of ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene total disc replacement components have been observed following surgical revision. However, neither in vitro testing nor retrieval-based evidence has shown the effect(s) of impingement on the characteristics of polyethylene wear debris. Thus, we sought to determine (1) differences in polyethylene particle size, shape, number, or biological activity that correspond to mild or severe rim impingement and (2) in an analysis of all total disc replacements, regardless of impingement classification, whether there are correlations between the extent of regional damage and the characteristics of polyethylene wear debris. Methods: The extent of dome and rim damage was characterized for eleven retrieved polyethylene cores obtained at revision surgery after an average duration of implantation of 9.7 years (range, 4.6 to 16.1 years). Polyethylene wear debris was isolated from periprosthetic tissues with use of nitric acid and was imaged with use of environmental scanning electron microscopy. Subsequently, particle size, shape, number, biological activity, and chronic inflammation scores were determined. Results: Grouping of particles by size ranges that represented high biological relevance (<0.1 to 1-μm particles), intermediate biological relevance (1 to 10-μm particles), and low biological relevance (>10-μm particles) revealed an increased volume fraction of particles in the <0.1 to 1-μm and 1 to 10-μm size ranges in the mild-impingement cohort as compared with the severe-impingement cohort. The increased volume fractions resulted in a higher specific biological activity per unit particle volume in the mild-impingement cohort than in the severe-impingement cohort. However, functional biological activity, which is normalized by particle volume (mm3/g of tissue), was significantly higher in the severe-impingement cohort. This increase was due to a larger volume

  5. Artificial hydrogenase: biomimetic approaches controlling active molecular catalysts.

    PubMed

    Onoda, Akira; Hayashi, Takashi

    2015-04-01

    Hydrogenase catalyses reversible transformation of H2 to H(+) using an active site which includes an iron or nickel atom. Synthetic model complexes and molecular catalysts inspired by nature have unveiled the structural and functional basis of the active site with remarkable accuracy and this has led to the discovery of active synthetic catalysts. To further improve the activity of such molecular catalysts, both the first and outer coordination spheres should be well-organized and harmonized for an efficient shuttling of H(+), electrons, and H2. This article reviews recent advances in the design and catalytic properties of artificial enzymes that mimic the hydrogenase active site and the outer coordination sphere in combination with a peptide or protein scaffold.

  6. Oestrogen and parathyroid hormone alleviate lumbar intervertebral disc degeneration in ovariectomized rats and enhance Wnt/β-catenin pathway activity

    PubMed Central

    Jia, Haobo; Ma, Jianxiong; Lv, Jianwei; Ma, Xinlong; Xu, Weiguo; Yang, Yang; Tian, Aixian; Wang, Ying; Sun, Lei; Xu, Liyan; Fu, Lin; Zhao, Jie

    2016-01-01

    To investigate the mitigation effect and mechanism of oestrogen and PTH on disc degeneration in rats after ovariectomy, as well as on Wnt/β-catenin pathway activity, thirty 3-month-old rats were ovariectomized and divided into three groups. Ten additional rats were used as controls. Eight weeks later, the rats were administered oestrogen or PTH for 12 weeks, and then discs were collected for tests. Results showed that nucleus pulposus cells in the Sham group were mostly notochord cells, while in the OVX group, cells gradually developed into chondrocyte-like cells. Oestrogen or PTH could partly recover the notochord cell number. After ovariectomy, the endplate roughened and endplate porosity decreased. After oestrogen or PTH treatment, the smoothness and porosity of endplate recovered. Compared with the Sham group, Aggrecan, Col2a and Wnt/β-catenin pathway expression in OVX group decreased, and either oestrogen or PTH treatment improved their expression. The biomechanical properties of intervertebral disc significantly changed after ovariectomy, and oestrogen or PTH treatment partly recovered them. Disc degeneration occurred with low oestrogen, and the underlying mechanisms involve nutrition supply disorders, cell type changes and decreased Wnt/β-catenin pathway activity. Oestrogen and PTH can retard disc degeneration in OVX rats and enhance Wnt/β-catenin pathway activity in nucleus pulposus. PMID:27279629

  7. Chemotaxis of artificial microswimmers in active density waves

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Geiseler, Alexander; Hänggi, Peter; Marchesoni, Fabio; Mulhern, Colm; Savel'ev, Sergey

    2016-07-01

    Living microorganisms are capable of a tactic response to external stimuli by swimming toward or away from the stimulus source; they do so by adapting their tactic signal transduction pathways to the environment. Their self-motility thus allows them to swim against a traveling tactic wave, whereas a simple fore-rear asymmetry argument would suggest the opposite. Their biomimetic counterpart, the artificial microswimmers, also propel themselves by harvesting kinetic energy from an active medium, but, in contrast, lack the adaptive capacity. Here we investigate the transport of artificial swimmers subject to traveling active waves and show, by means of analytical and numerical methods, that self-propelled particles can actually diffuse in either direction with respect to the wave, depending on its speed and waveform. Moreover, chiral swimmers, which move along spiraling trajectories, may diffuse preferably in a direction perpendicular to the active wave. Such a variety of tactic responses is explained by the modulation of the swimmer's diffusion inside traveling active pulses.

  8. Constitutive expression of cathepsin K in the human intervertebral disc: new insight into disc extracellular matrix remodeling via cathepsin K and receptor activator of nuclear factor-κB ligand

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Introduction Cathepsin K is a recently discovered cysteine protease which cleaves the triple helical domains of type I to II collagen. It has been shown to be up-regulated in synovial tissue from osteoarthritic and rheumatoid patients, and is a component in normal and nonarthritic cartilage, where it increases with aging. Studies on heart valve development have recently shown that receptor activator of nuclear factor-κB ligand (RANKL) acts during valve remodeling to promote cathepsin K expression. Since extracellular matrix remodeling is a critical component of disc structure and biomechanical function, we hypothesized that cathepsin K and RANKL may be present in the human intervertebral disc. Methods Studies were performed following approval of the authors' Human Subjects Institutional Review Board. Six annulus specimens from healthier Thompson grade I to II discs, and 12 specimens from more degenerate grade III to IV discs were utilized in microarray analysis of RANKL and cathepsin K gene expression. Immunohistochemistry was also performed on 15 additional disc specimens to assess the presence of RANKL and cathepsin K. Results Cathepsin K gene expression was significantly greater in more degenerated grade III to IV discs compared to healthier grade I to II discs (P = 0.001). RANKL was also identified with immunohistochemistry and molecular analyses. RANKL gene expression was also significantly greater in more degenerated discs compared to healthier ones (P = 0.0001). A significant linear positive correlation was identified between expression of cathepsin K and RANKL (r2 = 92.2; P < 0.0001). Conclusions Extracellular matrix remodeling is a key element of disc biology. Our use of an appropriate antibody and gene expression studies showed that cathepsin K is indeed present in the human intervertebral disc. Immunolocalization and molecular analyses also confirmed that RANKL is present in the human disc. Expression of RANKL was found to be significantly greater in

  9. Time-dependent release of cobalt and chromium ions into the serum following implantation of the metal-on-metal Maverick type artificial lumbar disc (Medtronic Sofamor Danek).

    PubMed

    Zeh, Alexander; Becker, Claudia; Planert, Michael; Lattke, Peter; Wohlrab, David

    2009-06-01

    In total hip endoprosthetics and consequently for TDA, metal-on-metal combinations are used with the aim of reducing wear debris. In metal-on-metal TDA the release of metal ions has until now been secondary to the main discussion. In order to investigate the ion release following the implantation of the metal-on-metal Maverick type artificial lumbar disc we measured the serum cobalt and chromium concentration following implantation of 15 Maverick TDAs (monosegmental L5/S1, n = 5; bisegmental L4/5 and L5/S1, n = 5; average age 36.5 years). Five healthy subjects (no metal implants) acted as a control group. The two measurements of the metals were carried out using the absorption spectrometry after an average of 14.8 and 36.7 months. In summary, the concentrations of cobalt and chromium ions in the serum at both follow-ups amounted on average to 3.3 microg/l (SD 2.6) for cobalt and 2.2 microg/l (SD 1.5) for chromium. These figures are similar to the figures shown in the literature following the implantation of metal-on-metal THA. After a comparison to the control group, both the chromium and cobalt levels in the serum showed visible increases regarding the first and the second follow-up. As there is still a significant release of cobalt and chromium into the serum after an average follow-up of 36.7 months a persistent release of these ions must be taken into consideration. Despite the evaluation of the systemic and local effects of the release of Cr/Co from orthopaedic implants has not yet been concluded, one should take into consideration an explanation given to patients scheduled for the implantation of a metal-on-metal TDA about these results and the benefits/risks of alternative combinations of gliding contact surfaces.

  10. Screening of hyaluronic acid-poly(ethylene glycol) composite hydrogels to support intervertebral disc cell biosynthesis using artificial neural network analysis.

    PubMed

    Jeong, Claire G; Francisco, Aubrey T; Niu, Zhenbin; Mancino, Robert L; Craig, Stephen L; Setton, Lori A

    2014-08-01

    Hyaluronic acid (HA)-poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) composite hydrogels have been widely studied for both cell delivery and soft tissue regeneration applications. A very broad range of physical and biological properties have been engineered into HA-PEG hydrogels that may differentially affect cellular "outcomes" of survival, synthesis and metabolism. The objective of this study was to rapidly screen multiple HA-PEG composite hydrogel formulations for an effect on matrix synthesis and behaviors of nucleus pulposus (NP) and annulus fibrosus (AF) cells of the intervertebral disc (IVD). A secondary objective was to apply artificial neural network analysis to identify relationships between HA-PEG composite hydrogel formulation parameters and biological outcome measures for each cell type of the IVD. Eight different hydrogels were developed from preparations of thiolated HA (HA-SH) and PEG vinylsulfone (PEG-VS) macromers, and used as substrates for NP and AF cell culture in vitro. Hydrogel mechanical properties ranged from 70 to 489kPa depending on HA molecular weight, and measures of matrix synthesis, metabolite consumption and production and cell morphology were obtained to study relationships to hydrogel parameters. Results showed that NP and AF cell numbers were highest upon the HA-PEG hydrogels formed from the lower-molecular-weight HA, with evidence of higher sulfated glycosaminoglycan production also upon lower-HA-molecular-weight composite gels. All cells formed more multi-cell clusters upon any HA-PEG composite hydrogel as compared to gelatin substrates. Formulations were clustered into neurons based largely on their HA molecular weight, with few effects of PEG molecular weight observed on any measured parameters. Copyright © 2014 Acta Materialia Inc. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Screening of Hyaluronic Acid-Poly(ethylene glycol) Composite Hydrogels to Support Intervertebral Disc Cell Biosynthesis using Artificial Neural Network Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Jeong, Claire G.; Francisco, Aubrey T.; Niu, Zhenbin; Mancino, Robert L; Craig, Stephen L.; Setton, Lori A.

    2014-01-01

    Hyaluronic acid (HA) poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) composite hydrogels have been widely studied for both cell delivery and soft tissue regeneration applications. A very broad range of physical and biological properties have been engineered into HA-PEG hydrogels that may differentially affect cellular “outcomes” of survival, synthesis and metabolism. The objective of this study was to rapidly screen multiple HA-PEG composite hydrogel formulations for an effect on matrix synthesis and behaviors of nucleus pulposus (NP) and anulus fibrosus (AF) cells of the intervertebral disc (IVD). A secondary objective was to apply artificial neural network (ANN) analysis to identify relationships between HA-PEG composite hydrogel formulation parameters and biological outcome measures for each cell type of the IVD. Eight different hydrogels were developed from preparations of thiolated HA (HA-SH) and PEG vinylsulfone (PEG-VS) macromers, and used as substrates for NP and AF cell culture in vitro. Hydrogel mechanical properties ranged from 70-489 kPa depending on HA molecular weight, and measures of matrix synthesis, metabolite consumption and production, and cell morphology were obtained to study relationships to hydrogel parameters. Results showed that NP and AF cell numbers were highest upon the HA-PEG hydrogels formed from the lower molecular weight HA, with evidence of higher sGAG production also upon lower HA molecular weight composite gels. All cells formed more multi-cell clusters upon any HA-PEG composite hydrogel as compared to gelatin substrates. Formulations were clustered into neurons based largely on their HA molecular weight, with few effects of PEG molecular weight observed on any measured parameters. PMID:24859415

  12. Star formation in accretion discs: from the Galactic center to active galactic nuclei

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Collin, S.; Zahn, J.-P.

    2008-01-01

    Context: Keplerian accretion discs around massive black holes (MBHs) are gravitationally unstable beyond a few hundredths of a parsec, and they should collapse to form stars. It has indeed been shown recently that an accretion/star formation episode took place a few million years ago in the Galactic center (GC). This raises the question of how the disc can survive in AGN and quasars and continue to transport matter towards the black hole. Aims: We study the accretion/star formation process in quasars and AGN with one aim in mind: to show that a spectrum similar to the observed one can be produced by the disc. Methods: We compute models of stationary accretion discs that are either continuous or clumpy. Continuous discs must be maintained in a state of marginal stability so that the rate of star formation remains modest and the disc is not immediately destroyed. The disc then requires additional heating and additional transport of angular momentum. In clumpy discs, the momentum transport is provided by cloud interactions. Results: Non-viscous heating can be provided by stellar illumination, but in the case of continuous discs, even momentum transport by supernovae is insufficient for sustaining a marginal state, except at the very periphery of the disc. In clumpy discs it is possible to account for the required accretion rate through interactions between clouds, but this model is unsatisfactory because its parameters are tightly constrained without any physical justification. Conclusions: Finally one must appeal to non-stationary discs with intermittent accretion episodes like those that occurred in the GC, but such a model is probably not applicable either to luminous high redshift quasars or to radio-loud quasars.

  13. Film analysis of activated sludge microbial discs by the Taguchi method and grey relational analysis.

    PubMed

    Chen, M Y; Syu, M J

    2003-12-01

    A biofilm model with substrate inhibition is proposed for the activated sludge growing discs of rotating biological contactor (RBC); this model is different from the steady-state biofilm model based on the Monod assumption. Both deep and shallow types of biofilms are examined and discussed. The biofilm models based on both Monod and substrate inhibition (Haldane) assumptions are compared. In addition, the relationships between substrate utilization rate, biofilm thickness, and liquid phase substrate concentration are discussed. The influence order of the factors that affect the biofilm thickness is studied and discussed by combining the Taguchi method and grey relational analysis. In this work, a Taguchi orthogonal table is used to construct the series that is needed for grey relational analysis to determine the influence priority of the four parameters S(B), kX(f), K(s), and K(i).

  14. Effects of Ge Gen Decoction on PGE2 content and COX activity in the degenarated cervical intervertebral discs of rats.

    PubMed

    Jun, Zhou; Fang, Suping; Huo, Hairu; Qi, Yun; Guo, Shuying; Jiang, Tingliang; Shi, Qi

    2005-09-01

    After the rat model of cervical spondylosis was developed for 6 months, the PGE2 content and COX activity in the cervical intervertebral discs were determined respectively by radioimmunoassay and catalytic activity assay. The results indicated that the PGE2 content and COX activity in the model rat increased significantly, and that Ge Gen Decoction could down-regulate the PGE2 content and inhibit COX activity. This is possibly one of the mechanisms of Ge Gen Decoction for treating cervical spondylosis.

  15. Antiurolithiatic Activity of Extract and Oleanolic Acid Isolated from the Roots of Lantana camara on Zinc Disc Implantation Induced Urolithiasis.

    PubMed

    Vyas, Narendra; Argal, Ameeta

    2013-01-01

    The present study was done to evaluate the antiurolithiatic activity of ethanolic extract of roots (ELC 200 mg/kg) and oleanolic acid (OA 60 mg/kg, O.A. 80 mg/kg, O.A. 100 mg/kg) isolated from roots of Lantana camara in albino wistar male rats using zinc disc implantation induced urolithiatic model. The group in which only zinc disc was implanted without any treatment showed increase in calcium output (23  ± 2.7 mg/dL). Cystone receiving animals showed significant protection from such change (P < 0.01). Treatment with OA and ELC significantly reduced the calcium output at a dose of OA 60 mg/kg (P < 0.01), OA 80 mg/kg (P < 0.01), ELC 200 mg/kg (P < 0.01), and OA 100 mg/kg (P < 0.001), as compared with zinc disc implanted group. The average weight of zinc discs along with the deposited crystals in the only disc implanted group was found to be 111 ± 8.6 mg. Group that received Cystone 500 mg/kg showed significant reduction in the depositions (P < 0.001). Similarly, the rats which received OA and ELC showed reduced formation of depositions around the zinc disc (P < 0.001). The X-ray images of rats also showed significant effect of OA and ELC on urolitiasis. Thus, OA and ELC showed promising antiurolithiatic activity in dose dependant manner.

  16. Release of active and depot GDF-5 after adenovirus-mediated overexpression stimulates rabbit and human intervertebral disc cells.

    PubMed

    Wang, Haili; Kroeber, Markus; Hanke, Michael; Ries, Rainer; Schmid, Carsten; Poller, Wolfgang; Richter, Wiltrud

    2004-02-01

    To develop new therapeutic options for the treatment of disc degeneration we tested the possibility of overexpression of active growth and differentiation factor (GDF) 5 and of transforming growth factor (TGF) beta(1) by adenoviral gene transfer and characterized its effect on cell proliferation and matrix synthesis of cultured rabbit and human intervertebral disc cells. Recombinant adenovirus encoding for GDF-5 or TGF-beta(1) was developed and transgene expression characterized by RT-PCR, western blot and ELISA. Growth and matrix synthesis of transduced cells was measured by [(3)H]thymidine or [(35)S]sulfate incorporation. Disc cells expressed the receptors BMPR1A, BMPR1B, and BMPR2, which are relevant for GDF-5 action. Adenovirus efficiently transferred the GDF-5 gene or the TGF-beta(1) gene to rabbit and human intervertebral disc cells. About 50 ng GDF-5 protein/10(6 )cells per 24 h or 7 ng TGF-beta(1) protein/10(6 )cells per 24 h was produced. According to western blotting, two GDF-5 forms, with molecular weights consistent with the activated GDF-5 dimer and the proform, were secreted over the 3 weeks following gene transfer. Overexpressed GDF-5 and TGF-beta(1) were bioactive and promoted growth of rabbit disc cells in monolayer culture. Our results suggest that ex vivo gene delivery of GDF-5 and TGF-beta(1) is an attractive approach for the release of mature and pre-GDF-5 in surrounding tissue. This leads us to hope that it will prove possible to improve the treatment of degenerative disc disease by means of ex vivo gene transfer of single or multiple growth factors.

  17. Accretion disc dynamo activity in local simulations spanning weak-to-strong net vertical magnetic flux regimes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salvesen, Greg; Simon, Jacob B.; Armitage, Philip J.; Begelman, Mitchell C.

    2016-03-01

    Strongly magnetized accretion discs around black holes have attractive features that may explain enigmatic aspects of X-ray binary behaviour. The structure and evolution of these discs are governed by a dynamo-like mechanism, which channels part of the accretion power liberated by the magnetorotational instability (MRI) into an ordered toroidal magnetic field. To study dynamo activity, we performed three-dimensional, stratified, isothermal, ideal magnetohydrodynamic shearing box simulations. The strength of the self-sustained toroidal magnetic field depends on the net vertical magnetic flux, which we vary across almost the entire range over which the MRI is linearly unstable. We quantify disc structure and dynamo properties as a function of the initial ratio of mid-plane gas pressure to vertical magnetic field pressure, β _0^mid = p_gas / p_B. For 10^5 ≥ β _0^mid ≥ 10 the effective α-viscosity parameter scales as a power law. Dynamo activity persists up to and including β _0^mid = 10^2, at which point the entire vertical column of the disc is magnetic pressure dominated. Still stronger fields result in a highly inhomogeneous disc structure, with large density fluctuations. We show that the turbulent steady state βmid in our simulations is well matched by the analytic model of Begelman et al. describing the creation and buoyant escape of toroidal field, while the vertical structure of the disc can be broadly reproduced using this model. Finally, we discuss the implications of our results for observed properties of X-ray binaries.

  18. Line-driven disc wind model for ultrafast outflows in active galactic nuclei - scaling with luminosity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nomura, M.; Ohsuga, K.

    2017-03-01

    In order to reveal the origin of the ultrafast outflows (UFOs) that are frequently observed in active galactic nuclei (AGNs), we perform two-dimensional radiation hydrodynamics simulations of the line-driven disc winds, which are accelerated by the radiation force due to the spectral lines. The line-driven winds are successfully launched for the range of MBH = 106-9 M⊙ and ε = 0.1-0.5, and the resulting mass outflow rate (dot{M_w}), momentum flux (dot{p_w}), and kinetic luminosity (dot{E_w}) are in the region containing 90 per cent of the posterior probability distribution in the dot{M}_w-Lbol plane, dot{p}_w-Lbol plane, and dot{E}_w-Lbol plane shown in Gofford et al., where MBH is the black hole mass, ε is the Eddington ratio, and Lbol is the bolometric luminosity. The best-fitting relations in Gofford et al., d log dot{M_w}/d log {L_bol}˜ 0.9, d log dot{p_w}/d log {L_bol}˜ 1.2, and d log dot{E_w}/d log {L_bol}˜ 1.5, are roughly consistent with our results, d log dot{M_w}/d log {L_bol}˜ 9/8, d log dot{p_w}/d log {L_bol}˜ 10/8, and d log dot{E_w}/d log {L_bol}˜ 11/8. In addition, our model predicts that no UFO features are detected for the AGNs with ε ≲ 0.01, since the winds do not appear. Also, only AGNs with MBH ≲ 108 M⊙ exhibit the UFOs when ε ∼ 0.025. These predictions nicely agree with the X-ray observations. These results support that the line-driven disc wind is the origin of the UFOs.

  19. Subcompartmentalized Nanoreactors as Artificial Organelle with Intracellular Activity.

    PubMed

    Thingholm, Bo; Schattling, Philipp; Zhang, Yan; Städler, Brigitte

    2016-04-06

    Cell mimicry is an approach which aims at substituting missing or lost activity. In this context, the goal of artificial organelles is to provide intracellularly active nanoreactors to affect the cellular performance. So far, only a handful of reports discuss concepts addressing this challenge based on single-component reactors. Here, the assembly of nanoreactors equipped with glucose oxidase (GOx)-loaded liposomal subunits coated with a poly(dopamine) polymer layer and RGD targeting units is reported. When comparing different surface modifications, the uptake of the nanoreactors by endothelial cells and macrophages with applied shear stress is confirmed without inherent cytotoxicity. Furthermore, the encapsulation and preserved activity of GOx within the nanoreactors is shown. The intracellular activity is demonstrated by exposing macrophages with internalized nanoreactors to glucose and assessment of the cell viability after 6 and 24 h. The macrophage viability is found to be reduced due to the intracellularly produced hydrogen peroxide by GOx. This report on the first intracellular active subcompartmentalized nanoreactors is a considerable step in therapeutic cell mimicry. © 2016 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  20. High solar activity predictions through an artificial neural network

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Orozco-Del-Castillo, M. G.; Ortiz-Alemán, J. C.; Couder-Castañeda, C.; Hernández-Gómez, J. J.; Solís-Santomé, A.

    The effects of high-energy particles coming from the Sun on human health as well as in the integrity of outer space electronics make the prediction of periods of high solar activity (HSA) a task of significant importance. Since periodicities in solar indexes have been identified, long-term predictions can be achieved. In this paper, we present a method based on an artificial neural network to find a pattern in some harmonics which represent such periodicities. We used data from 1973 to 2010 to train the neural network, and different historical data for its validation. We also used the neural network along with a statistical analysis of its performance with known data to predict periods of HSA with different confidence intervals according to the three-sigma rule associated with solar cycles 24-26, which we found to occur before 2040.

  1. Multi-center, Prospective, Randomized, Controlled Investigational Device Exemption Clinical Trial Comparing Mobi-C Cervical Artificial Disc to Anterior Discectomy and Fusion in the Treatment of Symptomatic Degenerative Disc Disease in the Cervical Spine

    PubMed Central

    Bae, Hyun W.; Davis, Reginald; Gaede, Steven; Hoffman, Greg; Kim, Kee; Nunley, Pierce D.; Peterson, Daniel; Rashbaum, Ralph; Stokes, John

    2014-01-01

    Background Anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) is the gold standard for treating symptomatic cervical disc degeneration. Cervical total disc replacements (TDRs) have emerged as an alternative for some patients. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the safety and effectiveness of a new TDR device compared with ACDF for treating single-level cervical disc degeneration. Methods This was a prospective, randomized, controlled, multicenter Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulated Investigational Device Exemption (IDE) study. A total of 245 patients were treated (164 TDR: 81 ACDF). The primary outcome measure was overall success based on improvement in Neck Disability Index (NDI), no subsequent surgical interventions, and no adverse events (AEs) classified as major complications. Secondary outcome measures included SF-12, visual analog scale (VAS) assessing neck and arm pain, patient satisfaction, radiographic range of motion, and adjacent level degeneration. Patients were evaluated preoperatively and postoperatively at 6 weeks, 3, 6, 12, 18, and 24 months. The hypothesis was that the TDR success rate was non-inferior to ACDF at 24 months. Results Overall success rates were 73.6% for TDR and 65.3% for ACDF, confirming non-inferiority (p < 0.0025). TDR demonstrated earlier improvements with significant differences in NDI scores at 6 weeks and 3 months, and VAS neck pain and SF-12 PCS scores at 6 weeks (p<0.05). Operative level range of motion in the TDR group was maintained throughout follow-up. Radiographic evidence of inferior adjacent segment degeneration was significantly greater with ACDF at 12 and 24 months (p < 0.05). AE rates were similar. Conclusions Mobi-C TDR is a safe and effective treatment for single-level disc degeneration, producing outcomes similar to ACDF with less adjacent segment degeneration. Level of Evidence: Level I. Clinical relevance: This study adds to the literature supporting cervical TDR as a viable option to ACDF in

  2. Compensating Artificial Airway Resistance via Active Expiration Assistance.

    PubMed

    Wirth, Steffen; Seywert, Luc; Spaeth, Johannes; Schumann, Stefan

    2016-12-01

    Artificial airway resistance as provided by small-lumen tracheal tubes or catheters increases the risk of intrinsic PEEP (PEEPi). We hypothesized that by active expiration assistance, larger minute volumes could be generated without causing PEEPi compared with conventional mechanical ventilation when using small-lumen tracheal tubes or a cricothyrotomy catheter. We investigated the active expiration assistance in a physical model of the respiratory system and estimated its hypothetical performance in terms of maximal flow generated with endotracheal tubes ranging from 3.0 to 8.0 mm inner diameter (ID); with microlaryngeal tubes of 4.0, 5.0, and 6.0 mm ID; and with a cricothyrotomy catheter. Furthermore, we determined the minute volumes that could be achieved without generating PEEPi by ventilating a physical lung model using conventional mechanical ventilation or using active expiration assistance. The inspiratory and expiratory flow during active expiration assistance increased with increasing supply flow and decreased with decreasing ID of the connected endotracheal tubes (both P < .001). With small-lumen tracheal tubes, the active expiration assistance generated similar or higher minute volumes than conventional ventilation. Conventional mechanical ventilation with PEEPi <1 cm H2O was not achievable via a microlaryngeal tube of 4.0 mm ID and smaller lumen tubes. For mechanical ventilation via small-lumen tubes or thin catheters, active compensation of airway resistance might be a necessary means to generate adequate minute ventilation without causing PEEPi. Active expiration assistance can generate reasonable respiratory minute volumes via small-lumen tubes or thin catheters. Copyright © 2016 by Daedalus Enterprises.

  3. Developing an active artificial hair cell using nonlinear feedback control

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Joyce, Bryan S.; Tarazaga, Pablo A.

    2015-09-01

    The hair cells in the mammalian cochlea convert sound-induced vibrations into electrical signals. These cells have inspired a variety of artificial hair cells (AHCs) to serve as biologically inspired sound, fluid flow, and acceleration sensors and could one day replace damaged hair cells in humans. Most of these AHCs rely on passive transduction of stimulus while it is known that the biological cochlea employs active processes to amplify sound-induced vibrations and improve sound detection. In this work, an active AHC mimics the active, nonlinear behavior of the cochlea. The AHC consists of a piezoelectric bimorph beam subjected to a base excitation. A feedback control law is used to reduce the linear damping of the beam and introduce a cubic damping term which gives the AHC the desired nonlinear behavior. Model and experimental results show the AHC amplifies the response due to small base accelerations, has a higher frequency sensitivity than the passive system, and exhibits a compressive nonlinearity like that of the mammalian cochlea. This bio-inspired accelerometer could lead to new sensors with lower thresholds of detection, improved frequency sensitivities, and wider dynamic ranges.

  4. Photochemical chlorine and bromine activation from artificial saline snow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wren, S. N.; Donaldson, D. J.; Abbatt, J. P. D.

    2013-05-01

    The activation of reactive halogen species - particularly Cl2 - from sea ice and snow surfaces is not well understood. In this study, we used a photochemical snow reactor coupled to a chemical ionization mass spectrometer to investigate the production of Br2, BrCl and Cl2 from NaCl/NaBr-doped artificial snow samples. At temperatures above the NaCl-water eutectic, illumination of samples (λ > 310 nm) in the presence of gas phase O3 led to the accelerated release of Br2, BrCl and the release of Cl2 in a process that was significantly enhanced by acidity, high surface area and additional gas phase Br2. Cl2 production was only observed when both light and ozone were present. The total halogen release depended on [O3] and pre-freezing [NaCl]. Our observations support a "halogen explosion" mechanism occurring within the snowpack which is initiated by heterogeneous oxidation, and propagated by Br2 or BrCl photolysis and by recycling of HOBr and HOCl into the snowpack. Our study implicates an important role for active chemistry occurring within the interstitial air of aged (i.e., acidic) snow for halogen activation at polar sunrise.

  5. Photochemical chlorine and bromine activation from artificial saline snow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wren, S. N.; Donaldson, D. J.; Abbatt, J. P. D.

    2013-10-01

    The activation of reactive halogen species - particularly Cl2 - from sea ice and snow surfaces is not well understood. In this study, we used a photochemical snow reactor coupled to a chemical ionization mass spectrometer to investigate the production of Br2, BrCl and Cl2 from NaCl/NaBr-doped artificial snow samples. At temperatures above the NaCl-water eutectic, illumination of samples (λ > 310 nm) in the presence of gas phase O3 led to the accelerated release of Br2, BrCl and the release of Cl2 in a process that was significantly enhanced by acidity, high surface area and additional gas phase Br2. Cl2 production was only observed when both light and ozone were present. The total halogen release depended on [ozone] and pre-freezing [NaCl]. Our observations support a "halogen explosion" mechanism occurring within the snowpack, which is initiated by heterogeneous oxidation and propagated by Br2 or BrCl photolysis and by recycling of HOBr and HOCl into the snowpack. Our study implicates this important role of active chemistry occurring within the interstitial air of aged (i.e. acidic) snow for halogen activation at polar sunrise.

  6. Occupational Impact of Multilevel Cervical Disease Treated With Hybrid Cervical Disc Arthroplasty in Active Duty Military Population.

    PubMed

    Cleveland, Andrew; Herzog, Josh; Caram, Pedro

    2016-01-01

    This article evaluates the techniques, results, and complications of hybrid cervical disc arthroplasty in a high-demand military population. Emphasis is on the occupational impact and return to duty outcomes. This article is a case series with prospective follow-up of 30 hybrid cervical disc arthroplasty patients from the authors' institution. Average follow-up was 16.1 months. Average patient age was 39.7 years. Noncommissioned officer was the most common military rank. Cervical disc arthroplasty at C5/6 with fusion at C6/7 was the most common procedure (21/30). All classifications of military occupational specialty were represented. A total of 24/30 (80%) patients returned to duty (RTD) and 24/24 (100%) of RTD patients reported relief (postoperative improvement) compared with 4/6 (66.7%) medical evaluation board patients. Average RTD time was 15.6 weeks. All RTD patients maintained their preoperative military occupational specialty. Hybrid cervical disc arthroplasty has the potential to provide relief and return military patients to preoperative active duty status.

  7. Extracellular enzyme activities and nutrient availability during artificial groundwater recharge.

    PubMed

    Kolehmainen, Reija E; Korpela, Jaana P; Münster, Uwe; Puhakka, Jaakko A; Tuovinen, Olli H

    2009-02-01

    Natural organic matter (NOM) removal is the main objective of artificial groundwater recharge (AGR) for drinking water production and biodegradation plays a substantial role in this process. This study focused on the biodegradation of NOM and nutrient availability for microorganisms in AGR by the determination of extracellular enzyme activities (EEAs) and nutrient concentrations along a flow path in an AGR aquifer (Tuusula Water Works, Finland). Natural groundwater in the same area but outside the influence of recharge was used as a reference. Determination of the specific alpha-d-glucosidase (alpha-Glu), beta-d-glucosidase (beta-Glu), phosphomonoesterase (PME), leucine aminopeptidase (LAP) and acetate esterase (AEST) activities by fluorogenic model substrates revealed major increases in the enzymatic hydrolysis rates in the aquifer within a 10m distance from the basin. The changes in the EEAs along the flow path occurred simultaneously with decreases in nutrient concentrations. The results support the assumption that the synthesis of extracellular enzymes in aquatic environments is up and down regulated by nutrient availability. The EEAs in the basin sediment and pore water samples (down to 10cm) were in the same order of magnitude as in the basin water, suggesting similar nutritional conditions. Phosphorus was likely to be the limiting nutrient at this particular AGR site. Furthermore, the extracellular enzymes functioned in a synergistic and cooperative way.

  8. Combined effect of neonatal immune activation and mutant DISC1 on phenotypic changes in adulthood

    PubMed Central

    Ibi, Daisuke; Nagai, Taku; Koike, Hiroyuki; Kitahara, Yuko; Mizoguchi, Hiroyuki; Niwa, Minae; Jaaro-Peled, Hanna; Nitta, Atsumi; Yoneda, Yukio; Nabeshima, Toshitaka; Sawa, Akira; Yamada, Kiyofumi

    2010-01-01

    Gene-environment interaction may play a role in the etiology of schizophrenia. Transgenic mice expressing dominant-negative DISC1 (DN-DISC1 mice) show some histological and behavioral endophenotypes relevant to schizophrenia. Viral infection during neurodevelopment provides a major environmental risk for schizophrenia. Neonatal injection of polyriboinosinic-polyribocytidylic acid (polyI:C), which mimics innate immune responses elicited by viral infection, leads to schizophrenia-like behavioral alteration in mice after puberty. To study how gene-environmental interaction during neurodevelopment results in phenotypic changes in adulthood, we treated DN-DISC1 mice or wild-type littermates with injection of polyI:C during the neonatal stage, according to the published method, respectively, and the behavioral and histological phenotypes were examined in adulthood. We demonstrated that neonatal polyI:C treatment in DN-DISC1 mice resulted in the deficits of short-term, object recognition, and hippocampus-dependent fear memories after puberty, although polyI:C treatment by itself had smaller influences on wild-type mice. Furthermore, polyI:C-treated DN-DISC1 mice exhibited signs of impairment of social recognition and interaction, and augmented susceptibility to MK-801-induced hyperactivity as compared with vehicle-treated wild-type mice. Of most importance, additive effects of polyI:C and DN-DISC1 were observed by a marked decrease in parvalbumin-positive interneurons in the medial prefrontal cortex. These results suggest that combined effect of neonatal polyI:C treatment and DN-DISC1 affects some behavioral and histological phenotypes in adulthood. PMID:19716847

  9. Anti-urolithiatic activity of standardized extract of Biophytum sensitivum against zinc disc implantation induced urolithiasis in rats.

    PubMed

    Pawar, Anil Tukaram; Vyawahare, Niraj S

    2015-01-01

    Biophytum sensitivum (L.) DC (family: Oxalidaceae) has been used in the Indian indigenous system of medicine, Ayurveda, for the treatment of various health aliments including renal calculi. The present study was undertaken to investigate the anti-urolithiatic activity of standardized methanolic extract of whole plant of B. sensitivum (MBS) in rats. Urolithiasis was induced by surgical implantations of zinc disc in the urinary bladders of rats. Upon postsurgical recovery, different doses of MBS (viz., 100, 200, and 400 mg/kg body weight) were administered to zinc disc-implanted rats for the period of 7 days by the oral route. Anti-urolithiatic activity was evaluated by measuring various dimensions of stones and estimating levels of various biomarkers in serum and urine samples. A significant decrease in urinary output was observed in the disc-implanted animals, which was prevented by the MBS treatment. Supplementation with MBS caused significant improvement in glomerular filtration rate and protein excretion. The elevated levels of serum creatinine, uric acid, and blood urea nitrogen were also prevented by the MBS treatment. The MBS treatment showed reduced formation of deposition around the implanted zinc disc. The higher dose of MBS (400 mg/kg) found more effective. These results indicate that the administration of MBS significantly prevents the growth of urinary stones. The possible mechanism underlying this effect is mediated collectively through diuretic, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects of the plant. The results concluded that the methanolic extract of whole plant of B. sensitivum possessed significant anti-urolithiatic activity.

  10. Anti-urolithiatic activity of standardized extract of Biophytum sensitivum against zinc disc implantation induced urolithiasis in rats

    PubMed Central

    Pawar, Anil Tukaram; Vyawahare, Niraj S.

    2015-01-01

    Biophytum sensitivum (L.) DC (family: Oxalidaceae) has been used in the Indian indigenous system of medicine, Ayurveda, for the treatment of various health aliments including renal calculi. The present study was undertaken to investigate the anti-urolithiatic activity of standardized methanolic extract of whole plant of B. sensitivum (MBS) in rats. Urolithiasis was induced by surgical implantations of zinc disc in the urinary bladders of rats. Upon postsurgical recovery, different doses of MBS (viz., 100, 200, and 400 mg/kg body weight) were administered to zinc disc-implanted rats for the period of 7 days by the oral route. Anti-urolithiatic activity was evaluated by measuring various dimensions of stones and estimating levels of various biomarkers in serum and urine samples. A significant decrease in urinary output was observed in the disc-implanted animals, which was prevented by the MBS treatment. Supplementation with MBS caused significant improvement in glomerular filtration rate and protein excretion. The elevated levels of serum creatinine, uric acid, and blood urea nitrogen were also prevented by the MBS treatment. The MBS treatment showed reduced formation of deposition around the implanted zinc disc. The higher dose of MBS (400 mg/kg) found more effective. These results indicate that the administration of MBS significantly prevents the growth of urinary stones. The possible mechanism underlying this effect is mediated collectively through diuretic, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects of the plant. The results concluded that the methanolic extract of whole plant of B. sensitivum possessed significant anti-urolithiatic activity. PMID:26605159

  11. Laser-induced activation of regeneration processes in spine disc cartilage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sobol, Emil N.; Vorobjeva, Natalia N.; Sviridov, Alexander P.; Omelchenko, Alexander I.; Baskov, Andrey V.; Shekhter, Anatoliy B.; Baskov, Vladimir A.; Feldchtein, Felix I.; Kamensky, Vladislav A.; Kuranov, Roman V.

    2000-05-01

    The effect of laser radiation on the regeneration processes in spine disk cartilage has been studied in-vivo. We used rabbits as a model and a Holmium (2.09 micrometer) and an Erbium fiber (1.56 micrometer) lasers for irradiation the discs which were preliminary opened to remove annulus fibrosus and the nucleus pulposus of the intervertebral disc. The irradiated zone has been examined using an optical coherent tomography in one month after the operation and conventional histological technique in two months after the laser operation. It has been shown that laser radiation promotes the growth of the new cartilaginous tissue of fibrous and hyaline types.

  12. Artificial Recruitment of TFIID, but Not RNA Polymerase II Holoenzyme, Activates Transcription in Mammalian Cells

    PubMed Central

    Dorris, David R.; Struhl, Kevin

    2000-01-01

    In yeast cells, transcriptional activation occurs when the RNA polymerase II (Pol II) machinery is artificially recruited to a promoter by fusing individual components of this machinery to a DNA-binding domain. Here, we show that artificial recruitment of components of the TFIID complex can activate transcription in mammalian cells. Surprisingly, artificial recruitment of TATA-binding protein (TBP) activates transiently transfected and chromosomally integrated promoters with equal efficiency, whereas artificial recruitment of TBP-associated factors activates only chromosomal reporters. In contrast, artificial recruitment of various components of the mammalian Pol II holoenzyme does not confer transcriptional activation, nor does it result in synergistic activation in combination with natural activation domains. In the one case examined in more detail, the Srb7 fusion failed to activate despite being associated with the Pol II holoenzyme and being directly recruited to the promoter. Interestingly, some acidic activation domains are less effective when the promoter is chromosomally integrated rather than transiently transfected, whereas the Sp1 glutamine-rich activation domain is more effective on integrated reporters. Thus, yeast and mammalian cells differ with respect to transcriptional activation by artificial recruitment of the Pol II holoenzyme. PMID:10825198

  13. Visualizing the Hidden Activity of Artificial Neural Networks.

    PubMed

    Rauber, Paulo E; Fadel, Samuel G; Falcao, Alexandre X; Telea, Alexandru C

    2017-01-01

    In machine learning, pattern classification assigns high-dimensional vectors (observations) to classes based on generalization from examples. Artificial neural networks currently achieve state-of-the-art results in this task. Although such networks are typically used as black-boxes, they are also widely believed to learn (high-dimensional) higher-level representations of the original observations. In this paper, we propose using dimensionality reduction for two tasks: visualizing the relationships between learned representations of observations, and visualizing the relationships between artificial neurons. Through experiments conducted in three traditional image classification benchmark datasets, we show how visualization can provide highly valuable feedback for network designers. For instance, our discoveries in one of these datasets (SVHN) include the presence of interpretable clusters of learned representations, and the partitioning of artificial neurons into groups with apparently related discriminative roles.

  14. CycD/Cdk4 and Discontinuities in Dpp Signaling Activate TORC1 in the Drosophila Wing Disc.

    PubMed

    Romero-Pozuelo, Jesús; Demetriades, Constantinos; Schroeder, Phillip; Teleman, Aurelio A

    2017-08-21

    The molecular mechanisms regulating animal tissue size during development are unclear. This question has been extensively studied in the Drosophila wing disc. Although cell growth is regulated by the kinase TORC1, no readout exists to visualize TORC1 activity in situ in Drosophila. Both the cell cycle and the morphogen Dpp are linked to tissue growth, but whether they regulate TORC1 activity is not known. We develop here an anti-phospho-dRpS6 antibody that detects TORC1 activity in situ. We find, unexpectedly, that TORC1 activity in the wing disc is patchy. This is caused by elevated TORC1 activity at the cell cycle G1/S transition due to CycD/Cdk4 phosphorylating TSC1/2. We find that TORC1 is also activated independently of CycD/Cdk4 when cells with different levels of Dpp signaling or Brinker protein are juxtaposed. We thereby characterize the spatial distribution of TORC1 activity in a developing organ. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Planet-disc interaction in laminar and turbulent discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stoll, Moritz H. R.; Picogna, Giovanni; Kley, Wilhelm

    2017-07-01

    In weakly ionised discs turbulence can be generated through the vertical shear instability (VSI). Embedded planets are affected by a stochastic component in the torques acting on them, which can impact their migration. In this work we study the interplay between a growing planet embedded in a protoplanetary disc and the VSI turbulence. We performed a series of 3D hydrodynamical simulations for locally isothermal discs with embedded planets in the mass range from 5 to 100 Earth masses. We study planets embedded in an inviscid disc that is VSI unstable, becomes turbulent, and generates angular momentum transport with an effective α = 5 × 10-4. This is compared to the corresponding viscous disc using exactly this α-value. In general we find that the planets have only a weak impact on the disc turbulence. Only for the largest planet (100 M⊕) does the turbulent activity become enhanced inside of the planet. The depth and width of a gap created by the more massive planets (30,100 M⊕) in the turbulent disc equal exactly that of the corresponding viscous case, leading to very similar torque strengths acting on the planet, with small stochastic fluctuations for the VSI disc. At the gap edges vortices are generated that are stronger and longer-lived in the VSI disc. Low mass planets (with Mp ≤ 10 M⊕) do not open gaps in the disc in either case, but generate for the turbulent disc an overdensity behind the planet that exerts a significant negative torque. This can boost the inward migration in VSI turbulent discs well above the Type I rate. Owing to the finite turbulence level in realistic 3D discs the gap depth will always be limited and migration will not stall in inviscid discs.

  16. Artificial Limbs

    MedlinePlus

    ... you are missing an arm or leg, an artificial limb can sometimes replace it. The device, which is ... activities such as walking, eating, or dressing. Some artificial limbs let you function nearly as well as before.

  17. The Army’s Activities in Artificial Intelligence/Robotics,

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1982-08-27

    approach is to cast artificial intelligence as advanced computer software applicable to classes of nondeterministic problems such as natural language ...Semi-autonomous RPV target aquisition system - Unattended Forward observer et - - Expert maintenance systems - Manufacturing (GOCO, GOGO plants...Automated message analysis and distribution - Semi-autonomous air defense systems - Natural language query to C31 data bases - Computer-assisted

  18. Estrogens and the intervertebral disc.

    PubMed

    Calleja-Agius, J; Muscat-Baron, Y; Brincat, M P

    2009-09-01

    Intervertebral discs are an integral part of the vertebral column. It has been shown that menopause has a negative effect on bone and on intervertebral discs. Estrogen has a beneficial effect of preserving the health of collagen-containing tissues, including the intervertebral disc. The intervertebral disc allows for mobility of the spine, and maintains a uniform stress distribution of the area of the vertebral endplates. Also, the disc influences spinal height. The disc tissue is adapted for this biomechanical function. The function of the spine is impaired if there is a loss of disc tissue. Narrowing of the disc space due to degeneration of intervertebral discs is associated with a significantly increased risk of vertebral fractures. Estrogen should be seen as the first-choice therapy for bones and other collagen-rich tissues, such as intervertebral discs, because it maintains homeostasis of the bone-remodelling unit. Unlike bisphosphonates, estrogen is unique in its ability to regenerate bone collagen after its disintegration, apart from suppressing osteoclastic activity. Besides, there is insufficient data on deterioration in bone qualities and micro-cracks in patients on long-term bisphosphonates.

  19. Heme oxygenase-1 attenuates IL-1β induced alteration of anabolic and catabolic activities in intervertebral disc degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Bo; Shi, Changgui; Xu, Chen; Cao, Peng; Tian, Ye; Zhang, Ying; Deng, Lianfu; Chen, Huajiang; Yuan, Wen

    2016-01-01

    Intervertebral disc degeneration (IDD) is characterized by disordered extracellular matrix (ECM) metabolism, implicating subdued anabolism and enhanced catabolic activities in the nucleus pulposus (NP) of discs. Pro-inflammatory cytokines such as interleukin-1β (IL-1β) are considered to be potent mediators of ECM breakdown. Hemeoxygenase-1 (HO-1) has been reported to participate in cellular anti-inflammatory processes. The purpose of this study was to investigate HO-1 modulation of ECM metabolism in human NP cells under IL-1β stimulation. Our results revealed that expression of HO-1 decreased considerably during IDD progression. Induction of HO-1 by cobalt protoporphyrin IX attenuated the inhibition of sulfate glycosaminoglycan and collagen type II (COL-II) synthesis and ameliorated the reduced expressions of aggrecan, COL-II, SOX-6 and SOX-9 mediated by IL-1β. Induction of HO-1 also reversed the effect of IL-1β on expression of the catabolic markers matrix metalloproteinases-1, 3, 9 and 13. This was combined with inhibition of the activation of mitogen-activated protein kinase signaling. These findings suggest that HO-1 might play a pivotal role in IDD, and that manipulating HO-1 expression might mitigate the impairment of ECM metabolism in NP, thus potentially offering a novel therapeutic approach to the treatment of IDD. PMID:26877238

  20. Effects of osmotic stress on antioxidant enzymes activities in leaf discs of PSAG12-IPT modified Gerbera.

    PubMed

    Lai, Qi-xian; Bao, Zhi-yi; Zhu, Zhu-jun; Qian, Qiong-qiu; Mao, Bi-zeng

    2007-07-01

    Leaf senescence is often caused by water deficit and the chimeric gene P(SAG12)-IPT is an auto-regulated gene delaying leaf senescence. Using in vitro leaf discs culture system, the changes of contents of chlorophylls, carotenoids, soluble protein and thiobarbituric acid reactive substance (TBARS) and antioxidant enzymes activities were investigated during leaf senescence of P(SAGl2)-IPT modified gerbera induced by osmotic stress compared with the control plant (wild type). Leaf discs were incubated in 20%, 40% (w/v) polyethylene glycol (PEG) 6000 nutrient solution for 20 h under continuous light [130 micromol/(m(2) x s)]. The results showed that the contents of chlorophylls, carotenoids and soluble protein were decreased by osmotic stress with the decrease being more pronounced at 40% PEG, but that, at the same PEG concentration the decrease in the transgenic plants was significantly lower than that in the control plant. The activities of superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalases (CAT), ascorbate peroxidase (APX), guaiacol peroxidase (GPX) and dehydroascorbate reductase (DHAR) were stimulated by PEG treatment. However, the increases were higher in P(SAG12)-IPT transgenic plants than in the control plants, particularly at 40% PEG treatment. Lipid peroxidation (TBARS content) was increased by PEG treatment with the increase being much lower in transgenic plant than in the control plant. It could be concluded that the increases in the activities of antioxidant enzymes including SOD, CAT, APX, GPX and DHAR were responsible for the delay of leaf senescence induced by osmotic stress.

  1. Rethinking Black Hole Accretion Discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salvesen, Greg

    Accretion discs are staples of astrophysics. Tapping into the gravitational potential energy of the accreting material, these discs are highly efficient machines that produce copious radiation and extreme outflows. While interesting in their own right, accretion discs also act as tools to study black holes and directly influence the properties of the Universe. Black hole X-ray binaries are fantastic natural laboratories for studying accretion disc physics and black hole phenomena. Among many of the curious behaviors exhibited by these systems are black hole state transitions -- complicated cycles of dramatic brightening and dimming. Using X-ray observations with high temporal cadence, we show that the evolution of the accretion disc spectrum during black hole state transitions can be described by a variable disc atmospheric structure without invoking a radially truncated disc geometry. The accretion disc spectrum can be a powerful diagnostic for measuring black hole spin if the effects of the disc atmosphere on the emergent spectrum are well-understood; however, properties of the disc atmosphere are largely unconstrained. Using statistical methods, we decompose this black hole spin measurement technique and show that modest uncertainties regarding the disc atmosphere can lead to erroneous spin measurements. The vertical structure of the disc is difficult to constrain due to our ignorance of the contribution to hydrostatic balance by magnetic fields, which are fundamental to the accretion process. Observations of black hole X-ray binaries and the accretion environments near supermassive black holes provide mounting evidence for strong magnetization. Performing numerical simulations of accretion discs in the shearing box approximation, we impose a net vertical magnetic flux that allows us to effectively control the level of disc magnetization. We study how dynamo activity and the properties of turbulence driven by the magnetorotational instability depend on the

  2. Herniated Cervical Disc

    MedlinePlus

    ... center of the disc may start to lose water content, making the disc less effective as a cushion. As a disc deteriorates, the outer layer can also tear. This can allow displacement of the disc's center (called a herniated or ...

  3. Localized epigenetic silencing of a damage-activated WNT enhancer limits regeneration in mature Drosophila imaginal discs.

    PubMed

    Harris, Robin E; Setiawan, Linda; Saul, Josh; Hariharan, Iswar K

    2016-02-03

    Many organisms lose the capacity to regenerate damaged tissues as they mature. Damaged Drosophila imaginal discs regenerate efficiently early in the third larval instar (L3) but progressively lose this ability. This correlates with reduced damage-responsive expression of multiple genes, including the WNT genes wingless (wg) and Wnt6. We demonstrate that damage-responsive expression of both genes requires a bipartite enhancer whose activity declines during L3. Within this enhancer, a damage-responsive module stays active throughout L3, while an adjacent silencing element nucleates increasing levels of epigenetic silencing restricted to this enhancer. Cas9-mediated deletion of the silencing element alleviates WNT repression, but is, in itself, insufficient to promote regeneration. However, directing Myc expression to the blastema overcomes repression of multiple genes, including wg, and restores cellular responses necessary for regeneration. Localized epigenetic silencing of damage-responsive enhancers can therefore restrict regenerative capacity in maturing organisms without compromising gene functions regulated by developmental signals.

  4. A Novel Wearable Sensor-Based Human Activity Recognition Approach Using Artificial Hydrocarbon Networks.

    PubMed

    Ponce, Hiram; Martínez-Villaseñor, María de Lourdes; Miralles-Pechuán, Luis

    2016-07-05

    Human activity recognition has gained more interest in several research communities given that understanding user activities and behavior helps to deliver proactive and personalized services. There are many examples of health systems improved by human activity recognition. Nevertheless, the human activity recognition classification process is not an easy task. Different types of noise in wearable sensors data frequently hamper the human activity recognition classification process. In order to develop a successful activity recognition system, it is necessary to use stable and robust machine learning techniques capable of dealing with noisy data. In this paper, we presented the artificial hydrocarbon networks (AHN) technique to the human activity recognition community. Our artificial hydrocarbon networks novel approach is suitable for physical activity recognition, noise tolerance of corrupted data sensors and robust in terms of different issues on data sensors. We proved that the AHN classifier is very competitive for physical activity recognition and is very robust in comparison with other well-known machine learning methods.

  5. Sorption and biodegradation of artificial sweeteners in activated sludge processes.

    PubMed

    Tran, Ngoc Han; Gan, Jie; Nguyen, Viet Tung; Chen, Huiting; You, Luhua; Duarah, Ankur; Zhang, Lifeng; Gin, Karina Yew-Hoong

    2015-12-01

    There is limited information on the occurrence and removal of artificial sweeteners (ASs) in biological wastewater treatment plants, and in particular, the contribution of sorption and biodegradation to their removal. This study investigated the fate of ASs in both the aqueous and solid phases in a water reclamation plant (WRP). All the four targeted ASs, i.e. acesulfame (ACE), sucralose (SUC), cyclamate (CYC) and saccharine (SAC), were detected in both the aqueous and solid phases of raw influent and primary effluent samples. The concentrations of CYC and SAC in secondary effluent or MBR permeate were below their method detection limits. ACE and SUC were persistent throughout the WRP, whereas CYC and SAC were completely removed in biological treatment (>99%). Experimental results showed that sorption played a minor role in the elimination of the ASs due to the relatively low sorption coefficients (Kd), where Kd<500L/kg. In particular, the poor removal of ACE and SUC in the WRP may be attributed to their physiochemical properties (i.e. logKow<0 or logD<3.2) and chemical structures containing strong withdrawing electron functional groups in heterocyclic rings (i.e. chloride and sulfonate).

  6. Active galactic nuclei at z ˜ 1.5 - III. Accretion discs and black hole spin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Capellupo, D. M.; Netzer, H.; Lira, P.; Trakhtenbrot, B.; Mejía-Restrepo, J.

    2016-07-01

    This is the third paper in a series describing the spectroscopic properties of a sample of 39 AGN at z ˜ 1.5, selected to cover a large range in black hole mass (MBH) and Eddington ratio (L/LEdd). In this paper, we continue the analysis of the VLT/X-shooter observations of our sample with the addition of nine new sources. We use an improved Bayesian procedure, which takes into account intrinsic reddening, and improved MBH estimates, to fit thin accretion disc (AD) models to the observed spectra and constrain the spin parameter (a*) of the central black holes. We can fit 37 out of 39 AGN with the thin AD model, and for those with satisfactory fits, we obtain constraints on the spin parameter of the BHs, with the constraints becoming generally less well defined with decreasing BH mass. Our spin parameter estimates range from ˜-0.6 to maximum spin for our sample, and our results are consistent with the `spin-up' scenario of BH spin evolution. We also discuss how the results of our analysis vary with the inclusion of non-simultaneous GALEX photometry in our thin AD fitting. Simultaneous spectra covering the rest-frame optical through far-UV are necessary to definitively test the thin AD theory and obtain the best constraints on the spin parameter.

  7. Compensatory Proliferation in Drosophila Imaginal Discs Requires Dronc-Dependent p53 Activity

    PubMed Central

    Wells, Brent S.; Yoshida, Eri; Johnston*, Laura A.

    2006-01-01

    Summary Background The p53 transcription factor directs a transcriptional program that determines whether a cell lives or dies after DNA damage. Animal survival after extensive cellular damage often requires that lost tissue be replaced through compensatory growth or regeneration. In Drosophila, damaged imaginal disc cells can induce the proliferation of neighboring viable cells, but how this is controlled is not clear. Here we provide evidence that Drosophila p53 (dp53) has a previously unidentified role in coordinating the compensatory growth response to tissue damage. Results We find that dp53, the sole p53 ortholog in Drosophila, is required for each component of the response to cellular damage, including two separate cell-cycle arrests, changes in patterning gene expression, cell proliferation, and growth. We demonstrate that these processes are regulated by dp53 in a manner that is independent of DNA-damage sensing but that requires the initiator caspase Dronc. Our results indicate that once induced, dp53 amplifies and sustains the response through a positive feedback loop with Dronc and the apoptosis-inducing factors Hid and Reaper. Conclusions How cell death and cell proliferation are coordinated during development and after stress is a fundamental question that is critical for an understanding of growth regulation. Our data suggest that dp53 may carry out an ancestral function that promotes animal survival through the coordination of responses leading to compensatory growth after tissue damage. PMID:16920621

  8. Comparison of the incidence of patient-reported post-operative dysphagia between ACDF with a traditional anterior plate and artificial cervical disc replacement.

    PubMed

    Yang, Yi; Ma, Litai; Liu, Hao; Liu, Yilian; Hong, Ying; Wang, Beiyu; Ding, Chen; Deng, Yuxiao; Song, Yueming; Liu, Limin

    2016-09-01

    Compared with anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF), cervical disc replacement (CDR) has provided satisfactory clinical results. The incidence of post-operative dysphagia between ACDF with a traditional anterior plate and CDR remains controversial. Considering the limited studies and knowledge in this area, a retrospective study focusing on post-operative dysphagia was conducted. The Bazaz grading system was used to assess the severity of dysphagia at post-operative intervals including 1 week, 1 month, 3 months, 6 months, 12 months and 24 months respectively. The Chi-square test, Student t-test, Mann-Whitney U tests and Ordinal Logistic regression were used for data analysis when appropriate. Statistical significance was accepted at a probability value of <0.05. Two hundred and thirty-one patients in the CDR group and one hundred and fifty-eight patients in Plate group were included in this study. The total incidences of dysphagia in the CDR and plate group were 36.58% and 60.43% at one week, 29.27% and 38.85% at one month, 21.95% and 31.65% at three months, 6.83% and 17.99% at six months, 5.85% and 14.39% at 12 months, and 4.39% and 10.07% at the final follow-up respectively (All P<0.05, Mann-Whitney U test). Ordinal Logistic regression analysis showed that female patients, two-level surgery, C4/5 surgery, and anterior cervical plating were significant risk factors for post-operative dysphagia (all P<0.05). Comparing ACDF with a plate, CDR with a Prestige LP can significantly reduce both transient and persistent post-operative dysphagia. Female patients, two-level surgery, C4/5 surgery and anterior cervical plating were associated with a higher incidence of dysphagia. Future prospective, randomized, controlled studies are needed to further validate these findings. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Early failure of metal-on-metal artificial disc prostheses associated with lymphocytic reaction: diagnosis and treatment experience in four cases.

    PubMed

    Guyer, Richard D; Shellock, Jessica; MacLennan, Benjamin; Hanscom, David; Knight, Reginald Q; McCombe, Peter; Jacobs, Joshua J; Urban, Robert M; Bradford, David; Ohnmeiss, Donna D

    2011-04-01

    Report of four collected cases. The purpose of this report is to describe the presentation, diagnostic workup, treatment, and pathologic findings in four cases of lymphocytic reaction in patients receiving a metal-on-metal total disc replacement (TDR). Metal-on-metal designs in hip arthroplasty have gained popularity because of decreased volumetric wear rates and theoretically increased implant longevity. Systemic metal ions produced have not been associated with adverse clinical sequelae, although there have been reports of local soft-tissue reactions leading to early prosthetic failure. Histologic evaluation in these cases suggested a cell-mediated delayed-type hypersensitivity reaction. Metal-on-metal bearings have also emerged in lumbar and cervical TDR. This report is on four patients, from three centers, who underwent TDR, using a metal-on-metal implant, and later presented with symptoms that were determined to be due to lymphocytic reaction. Details of their symptoms, diagnostic work-up, treatment, and outcomes were compiled. All four patients initially had a good surgical outcome, followed by the onset and worsening of axial pain, and/or radicular symptoms months later. All patients had imaging findings of a mass lesion with neurologic impingement. All three of the lumbar patients underwent a decompressive posterior procedure before the eventual device removal and fusion. Intraoperatively, in all the lumbar cases, a thick, yellowish, avascular soft-tissue mass was found to be responsible for an epidural-mass effect on the thecal sac. In the cervical case, there was a gray-tinged soft-tissue response around the implant, suggestive of metallosis. Independent laboratory analysis confirmed a lymphocytic reaction to the implant. Three of the patients had a good outcome after the explant and revision surgery. The remaining patient continued to have residual symptoms related to the neural compression caused by the mass. In this group of patients from three centers

  10. Immunomorphological analysis of RAGE receptor expression and NF-kappaB activation in tissue samples from normal and degenerated intervertebral discs of various ages.

    PubMed

    Nerlich, Andreas G; Bachmeier, Beatrice E; Schleicher, Erwin; Rohrbach, Helmut; Paesold, Guenther; Boos, Norbert

    2007-01-01

    We immunohistochemically investigated the pattern of RAGE expression and NFkappaB translocation into the nucleus in 43 complete cross-sections of human lumbar intervertebral discs (neonatal-85 years) and compared this with the carboxymethyl-lysine (CML) modification of proteins as a marker for oxidative stress. No significant expression of RAGE, no obvious activation of NF-kappaB, and no deposition of CML-modified proteins were seen in fetal, juvenile, and young adolescent discs (until age of 13 years). In adults, 25-50% of nucleus pulposus cells were labeled for RAGE and activated NF-kappaB, which correlated well with the occurrence and extent of CML staining in the pericellular matrix. In the annulus fibrosus significantly lower values were seen than in the nucleus pulposus. In consequence, we provide evidence for activation of the NF-kappaB system in intervertebral discs in vivo, which correlates with accumulated oxidative stress and increases in age and disc degeneration. Oxidative stress (as monitored by CML modifications) may lead to RAGE activation and NF-kappaB translocation.

  11. Multicomponent synthesis of artificial nucleases and their RNase and DNase activity

    PubMed Central

    Gulevich, Anton V; Koroleva, Lyudmila S; Morozova, Olga V; Bakhvalova, Valentina N

    2011-01-01

    Summary The synthesis of new, artificial ribonucleases containing two amino acid residues connected by an aliphatic linker has been developed. Target molecules were synthesized via a catalytic three-component Ugi reaction from aliphatic diisocyanides. Preliminary investigations proved unspecific nuclease activity of the new compounds towards single-stranded RNA and double-stranded circular DNA. PMID:21915218

  12. Synthesis and characterization of a Redox-active artificial ion channel.

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    The synthesis and characterization of an artificial ion channel containing both fluorescent and redox-active centers is described. fluorescence spectroscopy was used to study qualitative and quantitative aspects of the coordination of alkali metal cations and black lipid membrane studies were used ...

  13. Recognition and classification of oscillatory patterns of electric brain activity using artificial neural network approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pchelintseva, Svetlana V.; Runnova, Anastasia E.; Musatov, Vyacheslav Yu.; Hramov, Alexander E.

    2017-03-01

    In the paper we study the problem of recognition type of the observed object, depending on the generated pattern and the registered EEG data. EEG recorded at the time of displaying cube Necker characterizes appropriate state of brain activity. As an image we use bistable image Necker cube. Subject selects the type of cube and interpret it either as aleft cube or as the right cube. To solve the problem of recognition, we use artificial neural networks. In our paper to create a classifier we have considered a multilayer perceptron. We examine the structure of the artificial neural network and define cubes recognition accuracy.

  14. Artificial masculinization in tilapia involves androgen receptor activation.

    PubMed

    Golan, Matan; Levavi-Sivan, Berta

    2014-10-01

    Estrogens have a pivotal role in natural female sexual differentiation of tilapia while lack of steroids results in testicular development. Despite the fact that androgens do not participate in natural sex differentiation, synthetic androgens, mainly 17-α-methyltestosterone (MT) are effective in the production of all-male fish in aquaculture. The sex inversion potency of synthetic androgens may arise from their androgenic activity or else as inhibitors of aromatase activity. The current study is an attempt to differentiate between the two alleged activities in order to evaluate their contribution to the sex inversion process and aid the search for novel sex inversion agents. In the present study, MT inhibited aromatase activity, when applied in vitro as did the non-aromatizable androgen dihydrotestosterone (DHT). In comparison, exposure to fadrozole, a specific aromatase inhibitor, was considerably more effective. Androgenic activity of MT was evaluated by exposure of Sciaenochromis fryeri fry to the substance and testing for the appearance of blue color. Flutamide, an androgen antagonist, administered concomitantly with MT, reduced the appearance of the blue color and the sex inversion potency of MT in a dose-dependent manner. In tilapia, administration of MT, fadrozole or DHT resulted in efficient sex inversion while flutamide reduced the sex inversion potency of all three compounds. In the case of MT and DHT the decrease in sex inversion efficiency caused by flutamide is most likely due to the direct blocking of the androgen binding to its cognate receptor. The negative effect of flutamide on the efficiency of the fadrozole treatment may indicate that the masculinizing activity of fadrozole may be attributed to excess, un-aromatized, androgens accumulated in the differentiating gonad. The present study shows that when androgen receptors are blocked, there is a reduction in the efficiency of sex inversion treatments. Our results suggest that in contrast to

  15. Optimal Recognition Method of Human Activities Using Artificial Neural Networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oniga, Stefan; József, Sütő

    2015-12-01

    The aim of this research is an exhaustive analysis of the various factors that may influence the recognition rate of the human activity using wearable sensors data. We made a total of 1674 simulations on a publically released human activity database by a group of researcher from the University of California at Berkeley. In a previous research, we analyzed the influence of the number of sensors and their placement. In the present research we have examined the influence of the number of sensor nodes, the type of sensor node, preprocessing algorithms, type of classifier and its parameters. The final purpose is to find the optimal setup for best recognition rates with lowest hardware and software costs.

  16. Activation of the epidermal growth factor receptor by hydrogels in artificial tears

    PubMed Central

    PALUS, JENNIFER S.; CHAY, EDWARD Y.; HEALEY, JEFFREY; SULLENBERGER, REBECCA; KLARLUND, JES K.

    2008-01-01

    Most formulations of artificial tears include high-molecular weight hydrophilic polymers (hydrogels) that are usually thought to serve to enhance viscosity and to act as demulcents. A few reports have indicated that application of some of the polymers accelerates healing of wounds in epithelia. Since activation of the epidermal growth factor (EGF) receptor is critical for spontaneous corneal epithelial wound healing, we tested commonly used hydrogels for their ability to activate the EGF receptor and enhance closure of wounds. Five structurally unrelated hydrogels used in artificial tears were found to activate the EGF receptor. Importantly, two of the hydrogels enhanced wound healing in an organ culture model. We propose that the efficacy of hydrogels in treating dry eye may be related to their ability to activate the EGF receptor, and that hydrogels are inexpensive, safe agents to promote healing of wounds in the cornea and possibly in other tissues. PMID:18242602

  17. Electrically activated artificial muscles made with liquid crystal elastomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shahinpoor, Mohsen

    2000-06-01

    Composites of monodomain nematic liquid crystal elastomers and a conducting material distributed within their network are shown to exhibit large deformations, i.e. contraction, expansion, bending with strains of over 200% and appreciable force, by Joule heating through electrical activation. The electrical activation of the conducting material induces a rapid Joule heating in the sample leading to a nematic to isotropic phase transition where the elastomer of dimensions 32 mm x 7 mm x 0.4 mm contracted in less than a second. The cooling process, isotropic to nematic transition where the elastomer expands back to its original length, was slow and took 8 seconds. The material studied here is a highly novel liquid crystalline co-elastomer, invented and developed by Heino Finkelmann and co-workers at Albert-Ludwigs-Universitaet in Freiburg, Germany. The material is such that in which the mesogenic units are in both the side chains and the main chains of the elastomer. This co-elastomer was then mechanically loaded to induce a uniaxial network anisotropy before the cross-linking reaction was completed. These samples were then made into a composite with a conducting material such as dispersed silver particles or graphite fibers. The final samples was capable of undergoing more than 200% reversible strain in a few seconds.

  18. ARTIFICIAL ACTIVATION OF THE GROWTH IN VITRO OF CONNECTIVE TISSUE

    PubMed Central

    Carrel, Alexis

    1913-01-01

    The experiments have shown that extracts of tissues and tissue juices, under certain conditions, accelerate the growth in intro of the connective tissue from about three to forty times. This activating power was found in many tissues. It was much more marked, however, with the extracts of embryos, of adult spleen, and of the Rous sarcoma. The power diminished directly with the dilution of the extracts, and appeared not to apply to the tissues of a heterologous animal. The power was reduced when heated at 56° C., and removed when heated at 70° C. It was diminished markedly by filtration through a Berkefield filter and was completely suppressed by filtration through a Chamberland filter. Possibly the finding of the activating power of tissue extracts will have no immediate practical application. Nevertheless, it may be indirectly useful by leading to the discovery of some of the factors determining the growth of tissues and of the unknown laws of cell dynamics, and may ultimately throw light on the mechanism of the cicatrization of wounds. PMID:19867620

  19. A Flexible Approach for Human Activity Recognition Using Artificial Hydrocarbon Networks

    PubMed Central

    Ponce, Hiram; Miralles-Pechuán, Luis; Martínez-Villaseñor, María de Lourdes

    2016-01-01

    Physical activity recognition based on sensors is a growing area of interest given the great advances in wearable sensors. Applications in various domains are taking advantage of the ease of obtaining data to monitor personal activities and behavior in order to deliver proactive and personalized services. Although many activity recognition systems have been developed for more than two decades, there are still open issues to be tackled with new techniques. We address in this paper one of the main challenges of human activity recognition: Flexibility. Our goal in this work is to present artificial hydrocarbon networks as a novel flexible approach in a human activity recognition system. In order to evaluate the performance of artificial hydrocarbon networks based classifier, experimentation was designed for user-independent, and also for user-dependent case scenarios. Our results demonstrate that artificial hydrocarbon networks classifier is flexible enough to be used when building a human activity recognition system with either user-dependent or user-independent approaches. PMID:27792136

  20. A Flexible Approach for Human Activity Recognition Using Artificial Hydrocarbon Networks.

    PubMed

    Ponce, Hiram; Miralles-Pechuán, Luis; Martínez-Villaseñor, María de Lourdes

    2016-10-25

    Physical activity recognition based on sensors is a growing area of interest given the great advances in wearable sensors. Applications in various domains are taking advantage of the ease of obtaining data to monitor personal activities and behavior in order to deliver proactive and personalized services. Although many activity recognition systems have been developed for more than two decades, there are still open issues to be tackled with new techniques. We address in this paper one of the main challenges of human activity recognition: Flexibility. Our goal in this work is to present artificial hydrocarbon networks as a novel flexible approach in a human activity recognition system. In order to evaluate the performance of artificial hydrocarbon networks based classifier, experimentation was designed for user-independent, and also for user-dependent case scenarios. Our results demonstrate that artificial hydrocarbon networks classifier is flexible enough to be used when building a human activity recognition system with either user-dependent or user-independent approaches.

  1. Artificial activation of mature unfertilized eggs in the malaria vector mosquito, Anopheles stephensi (Diptera, Culicidae).

    PubMed

    Yamamoto, Daisuke S; Hatakeyama, Masatsugu; Matsuoka, Hiroyuki

    2013-08-01

    In the past decade, many transgenic lines of mosquitoes have been generated and analyzed, whereas the maintenance of a large number of transgenic lines requires a great deal of effort and cost. In vitro fertilization by an injection of cryopreserved sperm into eggs has been proven to be effective for the maintenance of strains in mammals. The technique of artificial egg activation is a prerequisite for the establishment of in vitro fertilization by sperm injection. We demonstrated that artificial egg activation is feasible in the malaria vector mosquito, Anopheles stephensi (Diptera, Culicidae). Nearly 100% of eggs dissected from virgin females immersed in distilled water darkened, similar to normally oviposited fertilized eggs. It was revealed by the cytological examination of chromosomes that meiotic arrest was relieved in these eggs approximately 20 min after incubation in water. Biochemical examinations revealed that MAPK (mitogen-activated protein kinase)/ERK (extracellular signal-regulated protein kinase) and MEK (MAPK/ERK kinase) were dephosphorylated similar to that in fertilized eggs. These results indicate that dissected unfertilized eggs were activated in distilled water and started development. Injection of distilled water into body cavity of the virgin blood-fed females also induced activation of a portion of eggs in the ovaries. The technique of artificial egg activation is expected to contribute to the success of in vitro fertilization in A. stephensi.

  2. In vitro maturation and artificial activation of donkey oocytes.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Gaoping; Wu, Kaifeng; Cui, Liang; Zhao, Lixia; Liu, Yiyi; Tan, Xiuwen; Zhou, Huanmin

    2011-09-01

    Three media were evaluated for their ability to support in vitro maturation of donkey (Equus asinus) oocytes and their development after parthenogenetic activation. The basal medium for Medium 1 (M1) and Medium 2 (M2) was M199 and DMEM/F12 respectively, whereas, Medium 3 (M3) consisted of equal parts (v/v) of M199 and DMEM/F12. All three media were supplemented with 10% (v/v) fetal calf serum, 0.01 units/mL porcine FSH, 0.01 units/mL equine LH, 200 ng/mL insulin-like growth factor 1(IGF-I), 10 μl/mL insulin-transferrin-selenium (ITS), 0.1 mg/mL taurine, 0.1 mg/mL L-cysteine, 0.05 mg/mL L-glutamine, 0.11 mg/mL sodium pyruvate, and 25 mg/mL gentamycin. There were no significant differences among the three maturation media for oocyte maturation. Maturation rate of donkey oocytes in M1 was 53% for compact (Cp) cumulus-oocyte complexes and 75% for expanded (Ex) cumulus-oocyte complexes; in M2 these were 55 and 77%, respectively; and in M3, 58 and 75%. The percentage of cleaved parthenotes and 4- or 8-cell embryos were not significantly different for oocytes matured in the various media (61 and 24% for M1; 66 and 32% for M2; and 67 and 33% for M3). Oocytes matured in M3 tended to yield a higher rate of advanced embryo development (morula) than oocytes matured in M1 (22 vs 9%; P = 0.07). In conclusion, donkey oocytes were matured and parthenogenetically activated in vitro, using methods similar to those used in the horse.

  3. Modeling and optimization of an elastic arthroplastic disc for a degenerated disc

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghouchani, Azadeh; Ravari, Mohammad; Mahmoudi, Farid

    2011-10-01

    A three-dimensional finite element model (FEM) of the L3-L4 motion segment using ABAQUS v 6.9 has been developed. The model took into account the material nonlinearities and is imposed different loading conditions. In this study, we validated the model by comparison of its predictions with several sets of experimental data. Disc deformation under compression and segmental rotational motions under moment loads for the normal disc model agreed well with the corresponding in vivo studies. By linking ABAQUS with MATLAB 2010.a, we determined the optimal Young s modulus as well as the Poisson's ratio for the artificial disc under different physiologic loading conditions. The results of the present study confirmed that a well-designed elastic arthroplastic disc preferably has an annulus modulus of 19.1 MPa and 1.24 MPa for nucleus section and Poisson ratio of 0.41 and 0.47 respectively. Elastic artificial disc with such properties can then achieve the goal of restoring the disc height and mechanical function of intact disc under different loading conditions and so can reduce low back pain which is mostly caused due to disc degeneration.

  4. Localized epigenetic silencing of a damage-activated WNT enhancer limits regeneration in mature Drosophila imaginal discs

    PubMed Central

    Harris, Robin E; Setiawan, Linda; Saul, Josh; Hariharan, Iswar K

    2016-01-01

    Many organisms lose the capacity to regenerate damaged tissues as they mature. Damaged Drosophila imaginal discs regenerate efficiently early in the third larval instar (L3) but progressively lose this ability. This correlates with reduced damage-responsive expression of multiple genes, including the WNT genes wingless (wg) and Wnt6. We demonstrate that damage-responsive expression of both genes requires a bipartite enhancer whose activity declines during L3. Within this enhancer, a damage-responsive module stays active throughout L3, while an adjacent silencing element nucleates increasing levels of epigenetic silencing restricted to this enhancer. Cas9-mediated deletion of the silencing element alleviates WNT repression, but is, in itself, insufficient to promote regeneration. However, directing Myc expression to the blastema overcomes repression of multiple genes, including wg, and restores cellular responses necessary for regeneration. Localized epigenetic silencing of damage-responsive enhancers can therefore restrict regenerative capacity in maturing organisms without compromising gene functions regulated by developmental signals. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.11588.001 PMID:26840050

  5. Return to Sports After Cervical Total Disc Replacement.

    PubMed

    Reinke, Andreas; Behr, Michael; Preuss, Alexander; Villard, Jimmy; Meyer, Bernhard; Ringel, Florian

    2017-01-01

    Total disc replacement (TDR) is typically indicated in young patients with a cervical soft disc herniation. There are few data on the activity level of patients after cervical TDR, in particular from young patients who are expected to have a high activity level with frequent exercising. The expectation is that returning to active sports after cervical TDR is not restricted. Fifty patients were treated with a monosegmental cervical TDR at our department between May 2006 and March 2012. Clinical status and radiographic parameters were evaluated preoperatively and during follow-up. In addition, information was gathered regarding neck disability index, pain, a questionnaire concerning athletic aspects, and a modified Tegner activity score. The study design was a prospective case series. All patients were treated with the Prestige artificial cervical disc for a single-level soft disc herniation with radiculopathy. The average age was 40 years, and the mean follow-up period was 53 months (range, 26-96). The median neck disability index during follow-up was 5, and median visual analog scale for pain was 2. Two professional athletes, 20 semiprofessionals, 24 hobby athletes, and 5 patients with a very low activity level were treated. The median time to resumption of sporting activity was 4 weeks after surgery. All professionals and semiprofessionals recovered to their previous activity level. All of the 20 hobby athletes recovered to resume their sport participation. The modified Tegner preoperative score was 4 and the postoperative score was 3.5 (P = 0.806). We found that cervical TDR did not prohibit sporting activities. All patients recovered and were able to take part in their previous activities at an appropriate intensity level. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Redundant disc

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Barack, W. N.; Domas, P. A.; Beekman, S. W. (Inventor)

    1978-01-01

    A rotatable disc is described that consists of parallel plates tightly joined together for rotation about a hub. Each plate is provided with several angularly projecting spaced lands. The lands of each plate are interposed in alternating relationship between the lands of the next adjacent plate. In this manner, circumferential displacement of adjacent sectors in any one plate is prevented in the event that a crack develops. Each plate is redundantly sized so that, in event of structural failure of one plate, the remaining plates support a proportionate share of the load of the failed plate. The plates are prevented from separating laterally through the inclusion of generally radially extending splines which are inserted to interlock cooperating, circumferentially adjacent lands.

  7. Mesoporous silica-encapsulated gold nanoparticles as artificial enzymes for self-activated cascade catalysis.

    PubMed

    Lin, Youhui; Li, Zhenhua; Chen, Zhaowei; Ren, Jinsong; Qu, Xiaogang

    2013-04-01

    A significant challenge in chemistry is to create synthetic structures that mimic the complexity and function of natural systems. Here, a self-activated, enzyme-mimetic catalytic cascade has been realized by utilizing expanded mesoporous silica-encapsulated gold nanoparticles (EMSN-AuNPs) as both glucose oxidase- and peroxidase-like artificial enzymes. Specifically, EMSN helps the formation of a high degree of very small and well-dispersed AuNPs, which exhibit an extraordinarily stability and dual enzyme-like activities. Inspired by these unique and attractive properties, we further piece them together into a self-organized artificial cascade reaction, which is usually completed by the oxidase-peroxidase coupled enzyme system. Our finding may pave the way to use matrix as the structural component for the design and development of biomimetic catalysts and to apply enzyme mimics for realizing higher functions.

  8. An activated energy approach for accelerated testing of the deformation of UHMWPE in artificial joints.

    PubMed

    Galetz, Mathias Christian; Glatzel, Uwe

    2010-05-01

    The deformation behavior of ultrahigh molecular polyethylene (UHMWPE) is studied in the temperature range of 23-80 degrees C. Samples are examined in quasi-static compression, tensile and creep tests to determine the accelerated deformation of UHMWPE at elevated temperatures. The deformation mechanisms under compression load can be described by one strain rate and temperature dependent Eyring process. The activation energy and volume of that process do not change between 23 degrees C and 50 degrees C. This suggests that the deformation mechanism under compression remains stable within this temperature range. Tribological tests are conducted to transfer this activated energy approach to the deformation behavior under loading typical for artificial knee joints. While this approach does not cover the wear mechanisms close to the surface, testing at higher temperatures is shown to have a significant potential to reduce the testing time for lifetime predictions in terms of the macroscopic creep and deformation behavior of artificial joints.

  9. A Novel Wearable Sensor-Based Human Activity Recognition Approach Using Artificial Hydrocarbon Networks

    PubMed Central

    Ponce, Hiram; Martínez-Villaseñor, María de Lourdes; Miralles-Pechuán, Luis

    2016-01-01

    Human activity recognition has gained more interest in several research communities given that understanding user activities and behavior helps to deliver proactive and personalized services. There are many examples of health systems improved by human activity recognition. Nevertheless, the human activity recognition classification process is not an easy task. Different types of noise in wearable sensors data frequently hamper the human activity recognition classification process. In order to develop a successful activity recognition system, it is necessary to use stable and robust machine learning techniques capable of dealing with noisy data. In this paper, we presented the artificial hydrocarbon networks (AHN) technique to the human activity recognition community. Our artificial hydrocarbon networks novel approach is suitable for physical activity recognition, noise tolerance of corrupted data sensors and robust in terms of different issues on data sensors. We proved that the AHN classifier is very competitive for physical activity recognition and is very robust in comparison with other well-known machine learning methods. PMID:27399696

  10. Mechanotransduction in intervertebral discs

    PubMed Central

    Tsai, Tsung-Ting; Cheng, Chao-Min; Chen, Chien-Fu; Lai, Po-Liang

    2014-01-01

    Mechanotransduction plays a critical role in intracellular functioning—it allows cells to translate external physical forces into internal biochemical activities, thereby affecting processes ranging from proliferation and apoptosis to gene expression and protein synthesis in a complex web of interactions and reactions. Accordingly, aberrant mechanotransduction can either lead to, or be a result of, a variety of diseases or degenerative states. In this review, we provide an overview of mechanotransduction in the context of intervertebral discs, with a focus on the latest methods of investigating mechanotransduction and the most recent findings regarding the means and effects of mechanotransduction in healthy and degenerative discs. We also provide some discussion of potential directions for future research and treatments. PMID:25267492

  11. Variables affecting disc size in the lumbar spine of rabbits: anesthesia, paralysis, and disc injury.

    PubMed

    Neufeld, J H; Machado, T; Margolin, L

    1991-01-01

    Methods have been developed that permit repetitive radiographic measurement of the lumbar intervertebral disc space in a rostral-caudal direction (width) in the anesthetized laboratory rabbit. Using isolated control discs and injured discs in which narrowing has been induced for chronic and acute periods, the widths of the lumbar intervertebral disc spaces determined ratio-graphically correlate with widths determined histologically (p less than 0.000, r = 0.75). Both an increase (widening) and a decrease (narrowing) in disc width were observed using radiography after different experimental treatments. Anesthesia and lower-body paralysis (an experimentally induced inability to bear weight on and to perceive a pinch stimulus in hind limbs) caused widening of the discs: anesthesia causing a general widening throughout the lumbar spine and lower-body paralysis causing a specific widening low in the lumbar spine. Both disc injection and piercing the disc with needles to recover nucleus pulposus material caused narrowing of the discs. Acridine-orange injection induced a narrowing accompanied by osteophytosis. Experimentally induced narrowing at L4-5 (the result of injury to the disc) resulted in narrowing also at L2-3. These findings are consistent with the hypothesis that in vivo disc-width size in the young rabbit depends on both the quantity of nucleus pulposus material and the force-generating activities of the adjacent spinal muscles, and that disc injury at one level stimulates narrowing at other levels.

  12. Effect of voluntary vs. artificial activation on the relationship of muscle torque to speed

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dudley, Gary A.; Harris, Robert T.; Duvoisin, Marc R.; Hather, Bruce M.; Buchanan, Paul

    1990-01-01

    The suggestion by Phillips and Petrofsky (1980) and Wickiewicz et al. (1984) that artificial activation of the knee extensor muscles should result in greater relative changes in torque than those evident with maximal voluntary activation is examined by investigating the speed-torque relationship of the right knee extensor muscle group in eight human subjects in whom activation was achieved by 'maximal' voluntary effort or by electrical stimulation. Torque was measured at a specific knee angle during isokinetic concentric or eccentric actions at velocities between 0.17 and 3.66 rad/s and during isometric actions. It is shown that, with artificial activation, the relative changes in both eccentric and concentric torque were greater as the speed increased; the speed-torque relationship was independed of the extent of activation and was similar to that of an isolated muscle. On the other hand, activation by the central nervous system during maximal effort depended on the speed and the type of muscle action performed.

  13. Effect of voluntary vs. artificial activation on the relationship of muscle torque to speed

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dudley, Gary A.; Harris, Robert T.; Duvoisin, Marc R.; Hather, Bruce M.; Buchanan, Paul

    1990-01-01

    The suggestion by Phillips and Petrofsky (1980) and Wickiewicz et al. (1984) that artificial activation of the knee extensor muscles should result in greater relative changes in torque than those evident with maximal voluntary activation is examined by investigating the speed-torque relationship of the right knee extensor muscle group in eight human subjects in whom activation was achieved by 'maximal' voluntary effort or by electrical stimulation. Torque was measured at a specific knee angle during isokinetic concentric or eccentric actions at velocities between 0.17 and 3.66 rad/s and during isometric actions. It is shown that, with artificial activation, the relative changes in both eccentric and concentric torque were greater as the speed increased; the speed-torque relationship was independed of the extent of activation and was similar to that of an isolated muscle. On the other hand, activation by the central nervous system during maximal effort depended on the speed and the type of muscle action performed.

  14. Bone morphogenetic protein-7 antagonizes tumor necrosis factor-α-induced activation of nuclear factor κB and up-regulation of the ADAMTS, leading to decreased degradation of disc matrix macromolecules aggrecan and collagen II.

    PubMed

    Wang, Zili; Hutton, William C; Yoon, S Tim

    2014-03-01

    Tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) is a regulatory cytokine that can increase the activity of enzymes such as ADAMTS (a disintegrin and metalloproteinase with thrombospondin motifs), which degrade disc matrix. ADAMTS are enzymes that break down disc matrix and thereby mediate disc degeneration. Bone morphogenetic protein-7 (BMP-7), on the other hand, stimulates synthesis of the disc extracellular matrix and is a potential therapeutic molecule for the treatment of disc degeneration. However, the effects of BMP-7 on TNF-α and ADAMTS are unknown. We investigated the effects of BMP-7 on the catabolic regulators such as TNF-α and ADAMTS and evaluated the molecular mechanism by which BMP-7 affects the catabolic regulators. This was an in vitro study in which we used human intervertebral disc cells cultured in alginate beads. Human intervertebral disc cells were cultured in alginate beads, and treated with TNF-α, or TNF- α plus BMP-7, pharmacological inhibitor of ERK1/2 (U0126), p38 (SB203580), or NFκB (BAY 11-7082). The mRNA levels of target genes were measured by real-time polymerase chain reaction, and the protein levels were determined by the Western blots. The nuclear factor (NF)κB activity was analyzed by measured phosphorylation and nuclear translocation of the NFκB protein p65. TNF-α activated NFκB signaling and induced up-regulation of the catabolic regulators ADAMTS-4 and ADAMTS-5, contributing to degradation of the disc matrix macromolecules aggrecan and collagen II. BMP-7 antagonized the TNF-α-induced activation of NFκB protein p65 and blocked TNF-α-induced up-regulation of ADAMTS-4 and ADAMTS-5, leading to reversing TNF-α-mediated degradation of aggrecan and collagen II. Moreover, BMP-7 antagonized the TNF-α-induced activation of NFκB signaling by suppressing phosphorylation and nucleus translocation of NFκB protein p65. BMP-7 antagonizes TNF-α-induced activation of NFκB and up-regulation of ADAMTS, leading to decreased degradation of disc

  15. Application of Artificial Intelligence to the Prediction of the Antimicrobial Activity of Essential Oils

    PubMed Central

    Daynac, Mathieu; Cortes-Cabrera, Alvaro; Prieto, Jose M.

    2015-01-01

    Essential oils (EOs) are vastly used as natural antibiotics in Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM). Their intrinsic chemical variability and synergisms/antagonisms between its components make difficult to ensure consistent effects through different batches. Our aim is to evaluate the use of artificial neural networks (ANNs) for the prediction of their antimicrobial activity. Methods. The chemical composition and antimicrobial activity of 49 EOs, extracts, and/or fractions was extracted from NCCLS compliant works. The fast artificial neural networks (FANN) software was used and the output data reflected the antimicrobial activity of these EOs against four common pathogens: Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, Candida albicans, and Clostridium perfringens as measured by standardised disk diffusion assays. Results. ANNs were able to predict >70% of the antimicrobial activities within a 10 mm maximum error range. Similarly, ANNs were able to predict 2 or 3 different bioactivities at the same time. The accuracy of the prediction was only limited by the inherent errors of the popular antimicrobial disk susceptibility test and the nature of the pathogens. Conclusions. ANNs can be reliable, fast, and cheap tools for the prediction of the antimicrobial activity of EOs thus improving their use in CAM. PMID:26457111

  16. Application of Artificial Intelligence to the Prediction of the Antimicrobial Activity of Essential Oils.

    PubMed

    Daynac, Mathieu; Cortes-Cabrera, Alvaro; Prieto, Jose M

    2015-01-01

    Essential oils (EOs) are vastly used as natural antibiotics in Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM). Their intrinsic chemical variability and synergisms/antagonisms between its components make difficult to ensure consistent effects through different batches. Our aim is to evaluate the use of artificial neural networks (ANNs) for the prediction of their antimicrobial activity. Methods. The chemical composition and antimicrobial activity of 49 EOs, extracts, and/or fractions was extracted from NCCLS compliant works. The fast artificial neural networks (FANN) software was used and the output data reflected the antimicrobial activity of these EOs against four common pathogens: Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, Candida albicans, and Clostridium perfringens as measured by standardised disk diffusion assays. Results. ANNs were able to predict >70% of the antimicrobial activities within a 10 mm maximum error range. Similarly, ANNs were able to predict 2 or 3 different bioactivities at the same time. The accuracy of the prediction was only limited by the inherent errors of the popular antimicrobial disk susceptibility test and the nature of the pathogens. Conclusions. ANNs can be reliable, fast, and cheap tools for the prediction of the antimicrobial activity of EOs thus improving their use in CAM.

  17. In vitro fertilization and artificial activation of eggs of the direct-developing anuran Eleutherodactylus coqui

    PubMed Central

    Toro, Esteban; Michael, Scott F

    2004-01-01

    Although much is known about the reproductive biology of pond-breeding frogs, there is comparatively little information about terrestrial-breeding anurans, a highly successful and diverse group. This study investigates the activation and in vitro fertilization of eggs of the Puerto Rican coqui frog obtained by hormonally induced ovulation. We report that spontaneous activation occurs in 34% of eggs, probably in response to mechanical stress during oviposition. Artificial activation, as evidenced by the slow block to polyspermy and the onset of zygote division, was elicited both by mechanical stimulation and calcium ionophore exposure in 64% and 83% of the cases, respectively. Finally, one in vitro fertilization protocol showed a 27% success rate, despite the fact that about one third of all unfertilized eggs obtained by hormone injection auto-activate. We expect these findings to aid in the conservation effort of Eleutherodactylus frogs, the largest vertebrate genus. PMID:15296510

  18. In vitro fertilization and artificial activation of eggs of the direct-developing anuran Eleutherodactylus coqui.

    PubMed

    Toro, Esteban; Michael, Scott F

    2004-08-05

    Although much is known about the reproductive biology of pond-breeding frogs, there is comparatively little information about terrestrial-breeding anurans, a highly successful and diverse group. This study investigates the activation and in vitro fertilization of eggs of the Puerto Rican coqui frog obtained by hormonally induced ovulation. We report that spontaneous activation occurs in 34% of eggs, probably in response to mechanical stress during oviposition. Artificial activation, as evidenced by the slow block to polyspermy and the onset of zygote division, was elicited both by mechanical stimulation and calcium ionophore exposure in 64% and 83% of the cases, respectively. Finally, one in vitro fertilization protocol showed a 27% success rate, despite the fact that about one third of all unfertilized eggs obtained by hormone injection auto-activate. We expect these findings to aid in the conservation effort of Eleutherodactylus frogs, the largest vertebrate genus.

  19. Taxis of Artificial Swimmers in a Spatio-Temporally Modulated Activation Medium

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Geiseler, Alexander; Hänggi, Peter; Marchesoni, Fabio

    2017-03-01

    Contrary to microbial taxis, where a tactic response to external stimuli is controlled by complex chemical pathways acting like sensor-actuator loops, taxis of artificial microswimmers is a purely stochastic effect associated with a non-uniform activation of the particles' self-propulsion. We study the tactic response of such swimmers in a spatio-temporally modulated activating medium by means of both numerical and analytical techniques. In the opposite limits of very fast and very slow rotational particle dynamics, we obtain analytic approximations that closely reproduce the numerical description. A swimmer drifts on average either parallel or anti-parallel to the propagation direction of the activating pulses, depending on their speed and width. The drift in line with the pulses is solely determined by the finite persistence length of the active Brownian motion performed by the swimmer, whereas the drift in the opposite direction results from the combination of ballistic and diffusive properties of the swimmer's dynamics.

  20. Circadian factors BMAL1 and RORα control HIF-1α transcriptional activity in nucleus pulposus cells: implications in maintenance of intervertebral disc health

    PubMed Central

    Suyama, Kaori; Silagi, Elizabeth S.; Choi, Hyowon; Sakabe, Kou; Mochida, Joji; Shapiro, Irving M.; Risbud, Makarand V.

    2016-01-01

    BMAL1 and RORα are major regulators of the circadian molecular oscillator. Since previous work in other cell types has shown cross talk between circadian rhythm genes and hypoxic signaling, we investigated the role of BMAL1 and RORα in controlling HIF-1-dependent transcriptional responses in NP cells that exist in the physiologically hypoxic intervertebral disc. HIF-1-dependent HRE reporter activity was further promoted by co-transfection with either BMAL1 or RORα. In addition, stable silencing of BMAL1 or inhibition of RORα activity resulted in decreased HRE activation. Inhibition of RORα also modulated HIF1α-TAD activity. Interestingly, immunoprecipitation studies showed no evidence of BMAL1, CLOCK or RORα binding to HIF-1α in NP cells. Noteworthy, stable silencing of BMAL1 as well as inhibition of RORα decreased expression of select HIF-1 target genes including VEGF, PFKFB3 and Eno1. To delineate if BMAL1 plays a role in maintenance of disc health, we studied the spinal phenotype of BMAL1-null mice. The lumbar discs of null mice evidenced decreased height, and several parameters associated with vertebral trabecular bone quality were also affected in nulls. In addition, null animals showed a higher ratio of cells to matrix in NP tissue and hyperplasia of the annulus fibrosus. Taken together, our results indicate that BMAL1 and RORα form a regulatory loop in the NP and control HIF-1 activity without direct interaction. Importantly, activities of these circadian rhythm molecules may play a role in the adaptation of NP cells to their unique niche. PMID:27049729

  1. Application of an artificial neural network for evaluation of activity concentration exemption limits in NORM industry.

    PubMed

    Wiedner, Hannah; Peyrés, Virginia; Crespo, Teresa; Mejuto, Marcos; García-Toraño, Eduardo; Maringer, Franz Josef

    2017-08-01

    NORM emits many different gamma energies that have to be analysed by an expert. Alternatively, artificial neural networks (ANNs) can be used. These mathematical software tools can generalize "knowledge" gained from training datasets, applying it to new problems. No expert knowledge of gamma-ray spectrometry is needed by the end-user. In this work an ANN was created that is able to decide from the raw gamma-ray spectrum if the activity concentrations in a sample are above or below the exemption limits. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Crocin exerts anti-inflammatory and anti-catabolic effects on rat intervertebral discs by suppressing the activation of JNK

    PubMed Central

    LI, KANG; LI, YAN; MA, ZHENJIANG; ZHAO, JIE

    2015-01-01

    As intervertebral disc (IVD) degeneration has been proven to contribute to low back pain (LBP), drug treatment aiming at attenuating IVD degeneration may prove to be benefiical. Crocin, a bioactive component of saffron, has been found to exert anti-inflammatory effects on cartilage. In the present study, the anti-inflammatory and anti-catabolic effects of crocin on rat IVDs were analyzed in vitro and ex vivo. Nucleus pulposus (NP) cells were isolated from the lumbar IVDs of Sprague-Dawley rats. The NP cells were first treated with various concentrations of crocin, and then stimulated with lipopolysaccharide (LPS) to induce inflammation. Subsequently, RT-qPCR and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay were carried out to measure the expression levels of catabolic enzymes, pro-inflammatory factors and the components of the extracellular matrix (ECM). In addition, western blot analysis was also used to investigate the related signaling pathways. The whole spinal motion segment (vertebra-IVD-vertebra section) of the rats was isolated and cultured in the presence or absence of LPS and crocin for 7 days. The ex vivo effects of crocin on the ECM of the IVD structures were determined by histological and biochemical analysis. In vitro, crocin significantly inhibited the LPS-induced overexpression of catabolic enzymes [matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-1, MMP-3, MMP-13, a disintegrin-like and metalloprotease (reprolysin type) with thrombospondin type 1 motif (ADAMTS)-4 and ADAMTS-5], pro-inflammatory factors [interleukin (IL)-1β, tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α, IL-6 and inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS)] and Toll-like receptor (TLR)-2 in a concentration-dependent manner. Notably, crocin partly prevented the downregulation of aggrecan and type II collagen (collagen-II). Moreover, crocin suppressed the LPS-induced activation of the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) pathway by inhibiting the phosphorylation of c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK). Ex vivo experiments demonstrated

  3. Crocin exerts anti-inflammatory and anti-catabolic effects on rat intervertebral discs by suppressing the activation of JNK.

    PubMed

    Li, Kang; Li, Yan; Ma, Zhenjiang; Zhao, Jie

    2015-11-01

    As intervertebral disc (IVD) degeneration has been proven to contribute to low back pain (LBP), drug treatment aiming at attenuating IVD degeneration may prove to be benefiical. Crocin, a bioactive component of saffron, has been found to exert anti-inflammatory effects on cartilage. In the present study, the anti-inflammatory and anti-catabolic effects of crocin on rat IVDs were analyzed in vitro and ex vivo. Nucleus pulposus (NP) cells were isolated from the lumbar IVDs of Sprague-Dawley rats. The NP cells were first treated with various concentrations of crocin, and then stimulated with lipopolysaccharide (LPS) to induce inflammation. Subsequently, RT-qPCR and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay were carried out to measure the expression levels of catabolic enzymes, pro-inflammatory factors and the components of the extracellular matrix (ECM). In addition, western blot analysis was also used to investigate the related signaling pathways. The whole spinal motion segment (vertebra-IVD-vertebra section) of the rats was isolated and cultured in the presence or absence of LPS and crocin for 7 days. The ex vivo effects of crocin on the ECM of the IVD structures were determined by histological and biochemical analysis. In vitro, crocin significantly inhibited the LPS-induced overexpression of catabolic enzymes [matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-1, MMP-3, MMP-13, a disintegrin-like and metalloprotease (reprolysin type) with thrombospondin type 1 motif (ADAMTS)-4 and ADAMTS‑5], pro-inflammatory factors [interleukin (IL)-1β, tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α, IL-6 and inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS)] and Toll-like receptor (TLR)‑2 in a concentration-dependent manner. Notably, crocin partly prevented the downregulation of aggrecan and type II collagen (collagen‑II). Moreover, crocin suppressed the LPS-induced activation of the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) pathway by inhibiting the phosphorylation of c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK). Ex vivo experiments

  4. Temporal anomaly detection: an artificial immune approach based on T cell activation, clonal size regulation and homeostasis.

    PubMed

    Antunes, Mário J; Correia, Manuel E

    2010-01-01

    This paper presents an artificial immune system (AIS) based on Grossman's tunable activation threshold (TAT) for temporal anomaly detection. We describe the generic AIS framework and the TAT model adopted for simulating T Cells behaviour, emphasizing two novel important features: the temporal dynamic adjustment of T Cells clonal size and its associated homeostasis mechanism. We also present some promising results obtained with artificially generated data sets, aiming to test the appropriateness of using TAT in dynamic changing environments, to distinguish new unseen patterns as part of what should be detected as normal or as anomalous. We conclude by discussing results obtained thus far with artificially generated data sets.

  5. Utilisation of Sand from Kaolin Washing for the Manufacture of Alkali-activated Artificial Sandstone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vavro, Martin; Vavro, Leona; Mec, Pavel; Soucek, Kamil; Pticen, Frantisek; Reiterman, Pavel

    2017-04-01

    Sandstones represent a traditional natural stones which are widely used in Czech architecture and sculpture over a long time. Thanks to their relatively easy workability, sandstones provide a wide range of stone products and also represent a popular material for architectural and sculptural purposes. In the field of restoration of artworks, they are therefore often used for manufacturing stone statue copies originally made from the same or similar type of stone. Despite a relatively common and varied occurrence of natural sandstones, the method of the artificial stone facsimiles creation in the form of various cast elements is also often applied in restoration practice. The history of application of artificial stones in civil engineering and architecture goes back to the ancient times, i.e. to Roman antiquity and possibly up to the time of ancient Egypt. The lack of appropriate natural rock, suitable in the view of colour, grain size or texture is the main reason of manufacturing copies based on synthetic mixtures. The other reason is high financial costs to create a sculpture copy from natural materials. Mixtures made from white and/or grey cements, sands, carefully selected crushed stone or well graded natural gravels, and mineral coloring pigments or mixtures with acrylate, polyester, and epoxy resins binder are the most frequently used artificial materials for cast stone manufacturing. This paper aims to bring information about composition and properties of artificial sandstones made from alkali-activated binder mixtures based on metakaolin and granulated blast furnace slag. The filler of this artificial stone is represented by fine-grained sand generated during kaolin wet processing. Used sand is mainly formed by quartz, feldspars, micas (muscovite > biotite), residual kaolin, and to a lesser extent also by Fe oxyhydroxides ("limonite"), titanium dioxide mineral (probably anatase), and carbonate mineral unidentified in detail. Annual Czech production of this

  6. Active Path Selection of Fluid Microcapsules in Artificial Blood Vessel by Acoustic Radiation Force

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Masuda, Kohji; Muramatsu, Yusuke; Ueda, Sawami; Nakamoto, Ryusuke; Nakayashiki, Yusuke; Ishihara, Ken

    2009-07-01

    Micrometer-sized microcapsules collapse upon exposure to ultrasound. Use of this phenomenon for a drug delivery system (DDS), not only for local delivery of medication but also for gene therapy, should be possible. However, enhancing the efficiency of medication is limited because capsules in suspension diffuse in the human body after injection, since the motion of capsules in blood flow cannot be controlled. To control the behavior of microcapsules, acoustic radiation force was introduced. We detected local changes in microcapsule density by producing acoustic radiation force in an artificial blood vessel. Furthermore, we theoretically estimated the conditions required for active path selection of capsules at a bifurcation point in the artificial blood vessel. We observed the difference in capsule density at both in the bifurcation point and in alternative paths downstream of the bifurcation point for different acoustic radiation forces. Comparing the experimental results with those obtained theoretically, the conditions for active path selection were calculated from the acoustic radiation force and fluid resistance of the capsules. The possibility of controlling capsule flow towards a specific point in a blood vessel was demonstrated.

  7. Turbine disc sealing assembly

    DOEpatents

    Diakunchak, Ihor S.

    2013-03-05

    A disc seal assembly for use in a turbine engine. The disc seal assembly includes a plurality of outwardly extending sealing flange members that define a plurality of fluid pockets. The sealing flange members define a labyrinth flow path therebetween to limit leakage between a hot gas path and a disc cavity in the turbine engine.

  8. The effect of training on lumbar spine posture and intervertebral disc degeneration in active-duty Marines.

    PubMed

    Rodriguez-Soto, Ana E; Berry, David B; Jaworski, Rebecca; Jensen, Andrew; Chung, Christine B; Niederberger, Brenda; Qadir, Aziza; Kelly, Karen R; Ward, Samuel R

    2017-08-01

    Military training aims to improve load carriage performance and reduce risk of injuries. Data describing the lumbar spine (LS) postural response to load carriage throughout training are limited. We hypothesised that training would reduce the LS postural response to load. The LS posture of 27 Marines was measured from upright MR images: with and without load (22.6 kg) at the beginning, middle, and end of School of Infantry (SOI) training. Disc degeneration was graded at L5-S1. No changes in posture and disc degeneration were found throughout training. During load carriage the LS became less lordotic and the sacrum more horizontal. Marines with disc degeneration had larger sacral postural perturbations in response to load. Our findings suggest that the postural response to load is defined more by the task needs than by the physical condition of the Marine. Practitioner Summary: The effect of military training on lumbar spine posture is unknown. The lumbar posture of 27 Marines was measured from upright MR images, with and without load throughout infantry training. No changes in posture or IVD degeneration were found across training. Marines with degeneration at the L5-S1 level had larger sacral postural perturbations in response to load.

  9. Analysis of expression and chitin-binding activity of the wing disc cuticle protein BmWCP4 in the silkworm, Bombyx mori.

    PubMed

    Deng, Hui-Min; Li, Yong; Zhang, Jia-Ling; Liu, Lin; Feng, Qi-Li

    2016-12-01

    The insect exoskeleton is mainly composed of chitin filaments linked by cuticle proteins. When insects molt, the cuticle of the exoskeleton is renewed by degrading the old chitin and cuticle proteins and synthesizing new ones. In this study, chitin-binding activity of the wing disc cuticle protein BmWCP4 in Bombyx mori was studied. Sequence analysis showed that the protein had a conservative hydrophilic "R&R" chitin-binding domain (CBD). Western blotting showed that BmWCP4 was predominately expressed in the wing disc-containing epidermis during the late wandering and early pupal stages. The immunohistochemistry result showed that the BmWCP4 was mainly present in the wing disc tissues containing wing bud and trachea blast during day 2 of wandering stage. Recombinant full-length BmWCP4 protein, "R&R" CBD peptide (CBD), non-CBD peptide (BmWCP4-CBD(-) ), four single site-directed mutated peptides (M1 , M2 , M3 and M4 ) and four-sites-mutated peptide (MF ) were generated and purified, respectively, for in vitro chitin-binding assay. The results indicated that both the full-length protein and the "R&R" CBD peptide could bind with chitin, whereas the BmWCP4-CBD(-) could not bind with chitin. The single residue mutants M1 , M2 , M3 and M4 reduced but did not completely abolish the chitin-binding activity, while four-sites-mutated protein MF completely lost the chitin-binding activity. These data indicate that BmWCP4 protein plays a critical role by binding to the chitin filaments in the wing during larva-to-pupa transformation. The conserved aromatic amino acids are critical in the interaction between chitin and the cuticle protein. © 2015 Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences.

  10. Activity patterns during food provisioning are affected by artificial light in free living great tits (Parus major).

    PubMed

    Titulaer, Mieke; Spoelstra, Kamiel; Lange, Cynthia Y M J G; Visser, Marcel E

    2012-01-01

    Artificial light may have severe ecological consequences but there is limited experimental work to assess these consequences. We carried out an experimental study on a wild population of great tits (Parus major) to assess the impact of light pollution on daily activity patterns during the chick provisioning period. Pairs that were provided with a small light outside their nest box did not alter the onset, cessation or duration of their working day. There was however a clear effect of artificial light on the feeding rate in the second half of the nestling period: when provided with artificial light females increased their feeding rate when the nestlings were between 9 and 16 days old. Artificial light is hypothesised to have affected the perceived photoperiod of either the parents or the offspring which in turn led to increased parental care. This may have negative fitness consequences for the parents, and light pollution may thus create an ecological trap for breeding birds.

  11. Ligand Biological Activity Predictions Using Fingerprint-Based Artificial Neural Networks (FANN-QSAR)

    PubMed Central

    Myint, Kyaw Z.; Xie, Xiang-Qun

    2015-01-01

    This chapter focuses on the fingerprint-based artificial neural networks QSAR (FANN-QSAR) approach to predict biological activities of structurally diverse compounds. Three types of fingerprints, namely ECFP6, FP2, and MACCS, were used as inputs to train the FANN-QSAR models. The results were benchmarked against known 2D and 3D QSAR methods, and the derived models were used to predict cannabinoid (CB) ligand binding activities as a case study. In addition, the FANN-QSAR model was used as a virtual screening tool to search a large NCI compound database for lead cannabinoid compounds. We discovered several compounds with good CB2 binding affinities ranging from 6.70 nM to 3.75 μM. The studies proved that the FANN-QSAR method is a useful approach to predict bioactivities or properties of ligands and to find novel lead compounds for drug discovery research. PMID:25502380

  12. Atomic gas in debris discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hales, Antonio S.; Barlow, M. J.; Crawford, I. A.; Casassus, S.

    2017-04-01

    We have conducted a search for optical circumstellar absorption lines in the spectra of 16 debris disc host stars. None of the stars in our sample showed signs of emission line activity in either Hα, Ca II or Na I, confirming their more evolved nature. Four stars were found to exhibit narrow absorption features near the cores of the photospheric Ca II and Na I D lines (when Na I D data were available). We analyse the characteristics of these spectral features to determine whether they are of circumstellar or interstellar origins. The strongest evidence for circumstellar gas is seen in the spectrum of HD 110058, which is known to host a debris disc observed close to edge-on. This is consistent with a recent ALMA detection of molecular gas in this debris disc, which shows many similarities to the β Pictoris system.

  13. Anti-glycated activity prediction of polysaccharides from two guava fruits using artificial neural networks.

    PubMed

    Yan, Chunyan; Lee, Jinsheng; Kong, Fansheng; Zhang, Dezhi

    2013-10-15

    High-efficiency ultrasonic treatment was used to extract the polysaccharides of Psidium guajava (PPG) and Psidium littorale (PPL). The aims of this study were to compare polysaccharide activities from these two guavas, as well as to investigate the relationship between ultrasonic conditions and anti-glycated activity. A mathematical model of anti-glycated activity was constructed with the artificial neural network (ANN) toolbox of MATLAB software. Response surface plots showed the correlation between ultrasonic conditions and bioactivity. The optimal ultrasonic conditions of PPL for the highest anti-glycated activity were predicted to be 256 W, 60 °C, and 12 min, and the predicted activity was 42.2%. The predicted highest anti-glycated activity of PPG was 27.2% under its optimal predicted ultrasonic condition. The experimental result showed that PPG and PPL possessed anti-glycated and antioxidant activities, and those of PPL were greater. The experimental data also indicated that ANN had good prediction and optimization capability.

  14. Optical Disc Applications in Libraries.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Andre, Pamela Q. J.

    1989-01-01

    Discusses a variety of library applications of optical disc storage technology, including CD-ROM, digital videodisc, and WORM. Research and development projects at the Library of Congress, National Library of Medicine, and National Agricultural Library are described, products offered by library networks are reviewed, and activities in academic and…

  15. The artificial peroxidase activity of magnetic iron oxide nanoparticles and its application to glucose detection.

    PubMed

    Yu, Faquan; Huang, Yongzhuo; Cole, Adam J; Yang, Victor C

    2009-09-01

    Aside from their superparamagnetic properties exploited in clinical magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), it was recently discovered that magnetic, iron oxide nanoparticles could function as an artificial, inorganic peroxidase. In this paper, we studied the impact of coating on the peroxidase activity of these nanoparticles. Nanoparticles with six different coating structures were synthesized and characterized by FTIR, TGA, TEM, size, zeta potential, and SQUID; and evaluated for peroxidase activity. Catalysis was found to follow Michaelis-Menten kinetics and peroxidase activity varied with respect to electrostatic affinity between nanoparticles and substrates, evidenced by differences in determined kinetic parameters. Glucose detection was selected as a model system because glucose could be indirectly measured from the release of hydrogen peroxide after its oxidation. Nanoparticles with high peroxidase activity exhibited higher sensitivity toward glucose, showing a larger linear slope when compared with those of low activity. A significantly improved linear correlation and detection limit of measured glucose could be readily obtained by manipulating the nanoparticle coating. Our findings suggest that iron oxide nanoparticles can be tailor-made to possess improved peroxidase-like activity. Such enhancements could further widen nanoparticle scope in glucose detection and extend its peroxidase functionality to other biomedical applications.

  16. Emergence of gamma motor activity in an artificial neural network model of the corticospinal system.

    PubMed

    Grandjean, Bernard; Maier, Marc A

    2017-02-01

    Muscle spindle discharge during active movement is a function of mechanical and neural parameters. Muscle length changes (and their derivatives) represent its primary mechanical, fusimotor drive its neural component. However, neither the action nor the function of fusimotor and in particular of γ-drive, have been clearly established, since γ-motor activity during voluntary, non-locomotor movements remains largely unknown. Here, using a computational approach, we explored whether γ-drive emerges in an artificial neural network model of the corticospinal system linked to a biomechanical antagonist wrist simulator. The wrist simulator included length-sensitive and γ-drive-dependent type Ia and type II muscle spindle activity. Network activity and connectivity were derived by a gradient descent algorithm to generate reciprocal, known target α-motor unit activity during wrist flexion-extension (F/E) movements. Two tasks were simulated: an alternating F/E task and a slow F/E tracking task. Emergence of γ-motor activity in the alternating F/E network was a function of α-motor unit drive: if muscle afferent (together with supraspinal) input was required for driving α-motor units, then γ-drive emerged in the form of α-γ coactivation, as predicted by empirical studies. In the slow F/E tracking network, γ-drive emerged in the form of α-γ dissociation and provided critical, bidirectional muscle afferent activity to the cortical network, containing known bidirectional target units. The model thus demonstrates the complementary aspects of spindle output and hence γ-drive: i) muscle spindle activity as a driving force of α-motor unit activity, and ii) afferent activity providing continuous sensory information, both of which crucially depend on γ-drive.

  17. Gender specific changes in cortical activation patterns during exposure to artificial gravity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schneider, Stefan; Robinson, Ryan; Smith, Craig; von der Wiesche, Melanie; Goswami, Nandu

    2014-11-01

    Keeping astronauts healthy during long duration spaceflight remains a challenge. Artificial gravity (AG) generated by a short arm human centrifuges (SAHC) is proposed as the next generation of integrated countermeasure devices that will allow human beings to safely spend extended durations in space, although comparatively little is known about any psychological side effects of AG on brain function. 16 participants (8 male and 8 female, GENDER) were exposed to 10 min at a baseline gravitational load (G-Load) of +.03 Gz, then 10 min at +.6 Gz for females and +.8 Gz for males, before being exposed to increasing levels of AG in a stepped manner by increasing the acceleration by +.1 Gz every 3 min until showing signs of pre-syncope. EEG recordings were taken of brain activity during 2 min time periods at each AG level. Analysing the results of the mixed total population of participants by two way ANOVA, a significant effect of centrifugation on alpha and beta activity was found (p<.01). Furthermore results revealed a significant interaction between G-LOAD and GENDER alpha-activity (p<.01), but not for beta-activity. Although the increase in alpha and beta activity with G-LOAD does not reflect a general model of cortical arousal and therefore cannot support previous findings reporting that AG may be a cognitively arousing environment, the gender specific responses identified in this study may have wider implications for EEG and AG research.

  18. Highly sensitive detection of E2 activity in ubiquitination using an artificial RING finger.

    PubMed

    Miyamoto, Kazuhide; Sumida, Miho; Yuasa-Sunagawa, Mayumi; Saito, Kazuki

    2017-03-01

    The ubiquitin-conjugating (E2) enzymes of protein ubiquitination are associated with various diseases such as leukemia, lung cancer, and breast cancer. Rapid and accurate detection of E2 enzymatic activities remains poor. Here, we described the detection of E2 activity on a signal accumulation ISFET biosensor (AMIS sensor) using an artificial RING finger (ARF). The use of ARF enables the simplified detection of E2 activity without a substrate. The high-sensitivity quantitative detection of E2 activities was demonstrated via real-time monitoring over a response range of femtomolar to micromolar concentrations. Furthermore, the monitoring of E2 activities was successfully achieved using human acute promyelocytic leukemia cells following treatment with the anticancer drug bortezomib, which allowed the assessment of the pathological conditions. This strategy is extremely simple and convenient, and the present detection could be widely applied to specific E2s for various types of cancers. Copyright © 2017 European Peptide Society and John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  19. Hemin-micelles immobilized in alginate hydrogels as artificial enzymes with peroxidase-like activity and substrate selectivity.

    PubMed

    Qu, Rui; Shi, Hejin; Wang, Ruolin; Cheng, Tangjian; Ma, Rujiang; An, Yingli; Shi, Linqi

    2017-02-28

    Artificial enzymes are widely investigated to mimic the active center and the recognition center of natural enzymes. The active center is responsible for the catalytic activity of enzymes, and the recognition center provides enzymes with specificity. Most of the previous studies on artificial enzymes preferred to solve the problem of activity rather than specificity due to the complexity of the enzyme structures related to substrate recognition. Inspired by the multilevel structures of enzymes and the unique net-structures of hydrogels, hemin-micelles immobilized in alginate hydrogels (HM-AH) were constructed by multistep self-assembly. The hemin-micelle was the active center and mimicked the microenvironment of the catalytic site in horseradish peroxidase (HRP). The alginate hydrogel further enhanced the catalytic activity and stability of hemin-micelles and endowed the artificial enzymes with a catalytic capability in harsh water conditions and non-polar organic solvents. The hydrogel also served as the recognition center, which exhibited substrate selectivity owing to the diffusivity differentiations of substrates in hydrogel fibers. It is the first example of constructing a micelle-hydrogel complex system as an artificial enzyme with both catalytic activity and substrate selectivity by the method of multistep self-assembly.

  20. Determination of DPPH free radical scavenging activity: application of artificial neural networks.

    PubMed

    Musa, Khalid Hamid; Abdullah, Aminah; Al-Haiqi, Ahmed

    2016-03-01

    A new computational approach for the determination of 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl free radical scavenging activity (DPPH-RSA) in food is reported, based on the concept of machine learning. Trolox standard was mix with DPPH at different concentrations to produce different colors from purple to yellow. Artificial neural network (ANN) was trained on a typical set of images of the DPPH radical reacting with different levels of Trolox. This allowed the neural network to classify future images of any sample into the correct class of RSA level. The ANN was then able to determine the DPPH-RSA of cinnamon, clove, mung bean, red bean, red rice, brown rice, black rice and tea extract and the results were compared with data obtained using a spectrophotometer. The application of ANN correlated well to the spectrophotometric classical procedure and thus do not require the use of spectrophotometer, and it could be used to obtain semi-quantitative results of DPPH-RSA.

  1. Production and removal of superoxide anion radical by artificial metalloenzymes and redox-active metals

    PubMed Central

    Kawano, Tomonori; Kagenishi, Tomoko; Kadono, Takashi; Bouteau, François; Hiramatsu, Takuya; Lin, Cun; Tanaka, Kenichiro; Tanaka, Licca; Mancuso, Stefano; Uezu, Kazuya; Okobira, Tadashi; Furukawa, Hiroka; Iwase, Junichiro; Inokuchi, Reina; Baluška, Frantisek; Yokawa, Ken

    2015-01-01

    Generation of reactive oxygen species is useful for various medical, engineering and agricultural purposes. These include clinical modulation of immunological mechanism, enhanced degradation of organic compounds released to the environments, removal of microorganisms for the hygienic purpose, and agricultural pest control; both directly acting against pathogenic microorganisms and indirectly via stimulation of plant defense mechanism represented by systemic acquired resistance and hypersensitive response. By aiming to develop a novel classes of artificial redox-active biocatalysts involved in production and/or removal of superoxide anion radicals, recent attempts for understanding and modification of natural catalytic proteins and functional DNA sequences of mammalian and plant origins are covered in this review article. PMID:27066179

  2. The Effect of GCSB-5 a New Herbal Medicine on Changes in Pain Behavior and Neuroglial Activation in a Rat Model of Lumbar Disc Herniation

    PubMed Central

    Cho, Hee Kyung; Kim, So-Yeon; Choi, Mi Jung; Baek, Seung Ok; Kwak, Sang Gyu

    2016-01-01

    Objective Lumbar disc herniation can induce sciatica by mechanical compression and/or chemical irritation. The aim of this study was to compare the effects of GCSB-5 (Shinbaro®) and NSAIDs on pain-related behavior and on the expressions of microglia, astrocytes, CGRP, TRPV1, IL-6, and CX3CL1 in a rat model of lumbar disc herniation. Methods 112 male Sprague-Dawley rats underwent implantation of nucleus pulposus to a dorsal root ganglion (DRG). Rats were divided into five groups as follows; a saline group (the vehicle control group) (n=27), a 10 mg/kg aceclofenac group (the aceclofenac group) (n=22), and 100, 300 or 600 mg/kg GCSB-5 groups (the GCSB-5 100, 300, or 600 groups) (n=21 for each group). Rats were tested for mechanical allodynia at 3 days after surgery and at 1 day, 3 days, 7 days, 14 days, 21 days, 28 days, 35 days, 42 days, 49 days, and 56 days after treatment commencement. Immunohistochemical staining of microglia (Iba1), astrocytes (GFAP), CGRP, and TRPV1, and PCR for IL-6 and CX3CL1 were performed on spinal dorsal horns and DRGs at 56 days after medication commencement. Results After 56 days of GCSB-5 300 administration, mechanical withdrawal thresholds were significantly increased (p<0.05), and immunohisto-chemical expressions of Iba1, GFAP, CGRP, and TRPV1 were reduced than other groups, but this difference was not statistically significant. Conclusion These results indicate GCSB-5 reduces mechanical allodynia and downregulates neuroglial activity and the expressions of CGRP and TRPV1 in the spinal segments of a rat model of lumbar disc herniation. PMID:26962414

  3. Indications for influence of artificial (man-made) activity on radon signals, in simulation experiments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Steinitz, G.; Kotlarsky, P.; Piatibratova, O.

    2016-11-01

    Radon (Rn-222; a radioactive noble gas) is characterized by large temporal variations that differ significantly from variations of (i) other trace elements in geogas (noble gases); (ii) variation patterns of other dynamic geophysical systems (atmospheric, tidal). Consensus exists that there is no simple and straightforward understanding of the phenomena and its behaviour. This lacuna in the understanding of the underlying principles hampers the development of applications-such as radon as a proxy of processes in the seismogenic context. Using results from field investigations and simulation experiments the GSI suggested that an unidentified extraterrestrial component, probably in solar radiation, drives periodic radon signals in the diurnal and annual frequency bands. Recent findings from experimental investigations shed additional perspectives allowing a new evaluation of the issue. Particular transient signals, measured with alpha and gamma detectors, are interpreted to reflect the influence of artificial activity. Criteria are (i) signals lasting several hours that occur around midday on workdays (Sunday-Thursday); (ii) signals composed of a train of around 10 strong pulses, each lasting less than 15 min, occurring within several hours once a week, from Wednesday afternoon/evening to Thursday morning. A first interpretation is that an unidentified artificial activity of some sort (industrial?) generates and emits an unidentified agent that reaches enhanced confined mode experiments at the GSI laboratory, which respond to the incoming agent in the form of radon signals. Developing the capability of identification of such an earth-bound source generating an influencing agent is a key step towards understanding of external influence on radioactivity of radon.

  4. Effect of high fat diet on artificial oocyte activation following superovulation in mice.

    PubMed

    Yamamoto, Daisuke; Yasui, Toshiyuki; Kobayashi, Chika; Kitazato, Takane; Iwasa, Takeshi; Irahara, Minoru

    2016-04-01

    The aim of the present study was to determine the effects of increased dietary intake and high fat diet (HFD) in mice on artificial oocyte activation by using puromycin or roscovitine. Six-week-old mice were fed as either a control diet group, an increased dietary intake group or an HFD group for 4 weeks. Oocytes were obtained following superovulation and were divided into three treatment groups (no activation treatment, calcium ionophore and puromycin treatment, and calcium ionophore and roscovitine treatment) and were incubated for 4 h. Retrieved oocytes and numbers of oocytes activated as assessed by morphological changes were compared among the three treatment groups. The proportion of degenerated oocytes in HFD mice was significantly higher than that in control diet mice. The rates of activation in oocytes treated with roscovitine were 90.3% in control diet mice, 89.8% in increased dietary intake mice and 67.9% in HFD mice. The rate of activation in oocytes treated with roscovitine in HFD mice was significantly lower than the rates in control diet mice and increased dietary intake mice. The rates of activation in oocytes treated with puromycin were 90.6% in control diet mice, 94.0% in increased dietary intake mice and 71.4% in HFD mice, and the rate of activation in oocytes treated with puromycin in HFD mice was significantly lower than the rates in control diet mice and increased dietary intake mice. HFD-induced obesity deteriorated induction of oocyte activation by roscovitine or puromycin in mice.

  5. Classification of Physical Activity: Information to Artificial Pancreas Control Systems in Real Time.

    PubMed

    Turksoy, Kamuran; Paulino, Thiago Marques Luz; Zaharieva, Dessi P; Yavelberg, Loren; Jamnik, Veronica; Riddell, Michael C; Cinar, Ali

    2015-10-06

    Physical activity has a wide range of effects on glucose concentrations in type 1 diabetes (T1D) depending on the type (ie, aerobic, anaerobic, mixed) and duration of activity performed. This variability in glucose responses to physical activity makes the development of artificial pancreas (AP) systems challenging. Automatic detection of exercise type and intensity, and its classification as aerobic or anaerobic would provide valuable information to AP control algorithms. This can be achieved by using a multivariable AP approach where biometric variables are measured and reported to the AP at high frequency. We developed a classification system that identifies, in real time, the exercise intensity and its reliance on aerobic or anaerobic metabolism and tested this approach using clinical data collected from 5 persons with T1D and 3 individuals without T1D in a controlled laboratory setting using a variety of common types of physical activity. The classifier had an average sensitivity of 98.7% for physiological data collected over a range of exercise modalities and intensities in these subjects. The classifier will be added as a new module to the integrated multivariable adaptive AP system to enable the detection of aerobic and anaerobic exercise for enhancing the accuracy of insulin infusion strategies during and after exercise.

  6. [Studies on construction of artificial mutants of Cucumber mosaic virus satellite RNA and their biological activity].

    PubMed

    Jin, Bo; Chen, Ji-Shuang; Zhang, Hua-Rong

    2005-08-01

    Based on the full length cDNA clone of a Cucumber mosaic virus satellite RNA, which was 369nt in size, artificial mutants were developed by the method of error-prone PCR and DNA shuffling. The new satellite cDNAs were transcribed in vitro into ssRNA and pseudo-recombined with a helper Cucumber mosaic virus, which contains no satellite RNA. Sequence analysis showed that A to T/G or G to A replacement all the four mutants, named MS1, MS5, MS6 and MS11 respectively, and there is no C to G or G to C replacement, but amongst, only the mutants MS11 could replicated when recombined with the helper virus strain. No satellite RNA could be detected by RT-PCR amplification and double-stranded RNA analysis for those pseudo-recombination constitution of Cucumber mosaic virus strain with mutants MS1, MS5 and MS6.Sequence homological comparison showed that the single replacement of mutants MS1, MS5 and MS6 occurred in the highly conservative regions and the T to A replacement of mutant MS11 was located in the normal-variation region. This is the first artificial mutation of satellite RNA of plant RNA viruses. The results indicated that single base in the region of satellite RNA maybe important to maintaining the biological activity of satellite RNA for its replication and stability. The variation and evolution of satellite RNA could be hopefully studied through combination directed evolution by DNA shuffling with pseudo-recombination in vitro.

  7. Improving quantitative structure-activity relationship models using Artificial Neural Networks trained with dropout

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mendenhall, Jeffrey; Meiler, Jens

    2016-02-01

    Dropout is an Artificial Neural Network (ANN) training technique that has been shown to improve ANN performance across canonical machine learning (ML) datasets. Quantitative Structure Activity Relationship (QSAR) datasets used to relate chemical structure to biological activity in Ligand-Based Computer-Aided Drug Discovery pose unique challenges for ML techniques, such as heavily biased dataset composition, and relatively large number of descriptors relative to the number of actives. To test the hypothesis that dropout also improves QSAR ANNs, we conduct a benchmark on nine large QSAR datasets. Use of dropout improved both enrichment false positive rate and log-scaled area under the receiver-operating characteristic curve (logAUC) by 22-46 % over conventional ANN implementations. Optimal dropout rates are found to be a function of the signal-to-noise ratio of the descriptor set, and relatively independent of the dataset. Dropout ANNs with 2D and 3D autocorrelation descriptors outperform conventional ANNs as well as optimized fingerprint similarity search methods.

  8. Artificial neural network optimization of Althaea rosea seeds polysaccharides and its antioxidant activity.

    PubMed

    Liu, Feng; Liu, Wenhui; Tian, Shuge

    2014-09-01

    A combination of an orthogonal L16(4)4 test design and a three-layer artificial neural network (ANN) model was applied to optimize polysaccharides from Althaea rosea seeds extracted by hot water method. The highest optimal experimental yield of A. rosea seed polysaccharides (ARSPs) of 59.85 mg/g was obtained using three extraction numbers, 113 min extraction time, 60.0% ethanol concentration, and 1:41 solid-liquid ratio. Under these optimized conditions, the ARSP experimental yield was very close to the predicted yield of 60.07 mg/g and was higher than the orthogonal test results (40.86 mg/g). Structural characterizations were conducted using physicochemical property and FTIR analysis. In addition, the study of ARSP antioxidant activity demonstrated that polysaccharides exhibited high superoxide dismutase activity, strong reducing power, and positive scavenging activity on superoxide anion, hydroxyl radical, 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl, and reducing power. Our results indicated that ANNs were efficient quantitative tools for predicting the total ARSP content.

  9. Improving Quantitative Structure-Activity Relationship Models using Artificial Neural Networks Trained with Dropout

    PubMed Central

    Mendenhall, Jeffrey; Meiler, Jens

    2016-01-01

    Dropout is an Artificial Neural Network (ANN) training technique that has been shown to improve ANN performance across canonical machine learning (ML) datasets. Quantitative Structure Activity Relationship (QSAR) datasets used to relate chemical structure to biological activity in Ligand-Based Computer-Aided Drug Discovery (LB-CADD) pose unique challenges for ML techniques, such as heavily biased dataset composition, and relatively large number of descriptors relative to the number of actives. To test the hypothesis that dropout also improves QSAR ANNs, we conduct a benchmark on nine large QSAR datasets. Use of dropout improved both Enrichment false positive rate (FPR) and log-scaled area under the receiver-operating characteristic curve (logAUC) by 22–46% over conventional ANN implementations. Optimal dropout rates are found to be a function of the signal-to-noise ratio of the descriptor set, and relatively independent of the dataset. Dropout ANNs with 2D and 3D autocorrelation descriptors outperform conventional ANNs as well as optimized fingerprint similarity search methods. PMID:26830599

  10. Improving quantitative structure-activity relationship models using Artificial Neural Networks trained with dropout.

    PubMed

    Mendenhall, Jeffrey; Meiler, Jens

    2016-02-01

    Dropout is an Artificial Neural Network (ANN) training technique that has been shown to improve ANN performance across canonical machine learning (ML) datasets. Quantitative Structure Activity Relationship (QSAR) datasets used to relate chemical structure to biological activity in Ligand-Based Computer-Aided Drug Discovery pose unique challenges for ML techniques, such as heavily biased dataset composition, and relatively large number of descriptors relative to the number of actives. To test the hypothesis that dropout also improves QSAR ANNs, we conduct a benchmark on nine large QSAR datasets. Use of dropout improved both enrichment false positive rate and log-scaled area under the receiver-operating characteristic curve (logAUC) by 22-46 % over conventional ANN implementations. Optimal dropout rates are found to be a function of the signal-to-noise ratio of the descriptor set, and relatively independent of the dataset. Dropout ANNs with 2D and 3D autocorrelation descriptors outperform conventional ANNs as well as optimized fingerprint similarity search methods.

  11. Artificial neural network based characterization of the volume of tissue activated during deep brain stimulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chaturvedi, Ashutosh; Luján, J. Luis; McIntyre, Cameron C.

    2013-10-01

    Objective. Clinical deep brain stimulation (DBS) systems can be programmed with thousands of different stimulation parameter combinations (e.g. electrode contact(s), voltage, pulse width, frequency). Our goal was to develop novel computational tools to characterize the effects of stimulation parameter adjustment for DBS. Approach. The volume of tissue activated (VTA) represents a metric used to estimate the spatial extent of DBS for a given parameter setting. Traditional methods for calculating the VTA rely on activation function (AF)-based approaches and tend to overestimate the neural response when stimulation is applied through multiple electrode contacts. Therefore, we created a new method for VTA calculation that relied on artificial neural networks (ANNs). Main results. The ANN-based predictor provides more accurate descriptions of the spatial spread of activation compared to AF-based approaches for monopolar stimulation. In addition, the ANN was able to accurately estimate the VTA in response to multi-contact electrode configurations. Significance. The ANN-based approach may represent a useful method for fast computation of the VTA in situations with limited computational resources, such as a clinical DBS programming application on a tablet computer.

  12. Hemoglobin–Albumin Cluster Incorporating a Pt Nanoparticle: Artificial O2 Carrier with Antioxidant Activities

    PubMed Central

    Hosaka, Hitomi; Haruki, Risa; Yamada, Kana; Böttcher, Christoph; Komatsu, Teruyuki

    2014-01-01

    A covalent core–shell structured protein cluster composed of hemoglobin (Hb) at the center and human serum albumins (HSA) at the periphery, Hb-HSAm, is an artificial O2 carrier that can function as a red blood cell substitute. Here we described the preparation of a novel Hb-HSA3 cluster with antioxidant activities and its O2 complex stable in aqueous H2O2 solution. We used an approach of incorporating a Pt nanoparticle (PtNP) into the exterior HSA unit of the cluster. A citrate reduced PtNP (1.8 nm diameter) was bound tightly within the cleft of free HSA with a binding constant (K) of 1.1×107 M−1, generating a stable HSA-PtNP complex. This platinated protein showed high catalytic activities for dismutations of superoxide radical anions (O2•–) and hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), i.e., superoxide dismutase and catalase activities. Also, Hb-HSA3 captured PtNP into the external albumin unit (K = 1.1×107 M−1), yielding an Hb-HSA3(PtNP) cluster. The association of PtNP caused no alteration of the protein surface net charge and O2 binding affinity. The peripheral HSA-PtNP shell prevents oxidation of the core Hb, which enables the formation of an extremely stable O2 complex, even in H2O2 solution. PMID:25310133

  13. Artificial Warming and Rain Addition Increase Phenol Oxidase Activity in Arctic Soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kang, H.; Seo, J.; Jang, I.; Lee, Y. K.

    2014-12-01

    Artic tundra is one of the largest carbon stocks, of which amount is estimated up to 1,600 Pg. Global climate change models predict surface temperature rise and higher precipitation during summer in Arctic regions, raising concerns about faster decomposition of organic carbon and consequent releases of CO2, CH4 and DOC. Microorganisms are directly involved in decomposition process by releasing various extracellular enzymes. In particular, phenol oxidase was noted to play a key role because it is related to dynamics of highly recalcitrant carbon, which often represents a rate-limiting step of overall decomposition. In this study, we monitored phenol oxidase activity, hydrolases (β-glucosidase, cellobiohydrolase, N-acetylglucosaminidase and aminopeptidase), microbial abundance (qPCR) and chemical properties (δ13C and δ15N signatures) of tundra soils exposed to artificial warming and rain addition, by employing a passive chamber method in Cambridge Bay, Canada. Warming and rain addition combinedly increased phenol oxidase activity while no such changes were discernible for other hydrolases. Stable isotope signature indicates that warming induced water stress to the ecosystem and that nitrogen availability may be enhanced, which is partially responsible for the changes in enzyme activities. A short-term warming (2 years) may not accelerate mineralization of easily decomposable carbon, but may affect phenol oxidase which has the longer-term influence on recalcitrant carbon.

  14. Design concepts in lumbar total disc arthroplasty

    PubMed Central

    Bellini, Chiara M.; Zweig, Thomas; Ferguson, Stephen; Raimondi, Manuela T.; Lamartina, Claudio; Brayda-Bruno, Marco; Fornari, Maurizio

    2008-01-01

    The implantation of lumbar disc prostheses based on different design concepts is widely accepted. This paper reviews currently available literature studies on the biomechanics of TDA in the lumbar spine, and is targeted at the evaluation of possible relationships between the aims of TDA and the geometrical, mechanical and material properties of the various available disc prostheses. Both theoretical and experimental studies were analyzed, by a PUBMED search (performed in February 2007, revised in January 2008), focusing on single level TDA. Both semi-constrained and unconstrained lumbar discs seem to be able to restore nearly physiological IAR locations and ROM values. However, both increased and decreased ROM was stated in some papers, unrelated to the clinical outcome. Segmental lordosis alterations after TDA were reported in most cases, for both constrained and unconstrained disc prostheses. An increase in the load through the facet joints was documented, for both semi-constrained and unconstrained artificial discs, but with some contrasting results. Semi-constrained devices may be able to share a greater part of the load, thus protecting the surrounding biological structure from overloading and possible early degeneration, but may be more susceptible to wear. The next level of development will be the biomechanical integration of compression across the motion segment. All these findings need to be supported by long-term clinical outcome studies. PMID:18946684

  15. Artificial sweeteners and salts producing a metallic taste sensation activate TRPV1 receptors.

    PubMed

    Riera, Céline E; Vogel, Horst; Simon, Sidney A; le Coutre, Johannes

    2007-08-01

    Throughout the world many people use artificial sweeteners (AS) for the purpose of reducing caloric intake. The most prominently used of these molecules include saccharin, aspartame (Nutrasweet), acesulfame-K, and cyclamate. Despite the caloric advantage they provide, one key concern in their use is their aversive aftertaste that has been characterized on a sensory level as bitter and/or metallic. Recently, it has been shown that the activation of particular T2R bitter taste receptors is partially involved with the bitter aftertaste sensation of saccharin and acesulfame-K. To more fully understand the biology behind these phenomena we have addressed the question of whether AS could stimulate transient receptor potential vanilloid-1 (TRPV1) receptors, as these receptors are activated by a large range of structurally different chemicals. Moreover, TRPV1 receptors and/or their variants are found in taste receptor cells and in nerve terminals throughout the oral cavity. Hence, TRPV1 activation could be involved in the AS aftertaste or even contribute to the poorly understood metallic taste sensation. Using Ca(2+) imaging on TRPV1 receptors heterologously expressed in the human embryonic kidney (HEK) 293 cells and on dissociated primary sensory neurons, we find that in both systems, AS activate TRPV1 receptors, and, moreover, they sensitize these channels to acid and heat. We also found that TRPV1 receptors are activated by CuSO(4), ZnSO(4), and FeSO(4), three salts known to produce a metallic taste sensation. In summary, our results identify a novel group of compounds that activate TRPV1 and, consequently, provide a molecular mechanism that may account for off tastes of sweeteners and metallic tasting salts.

  16. Structure-activity relationship in binding ligands to library of artificial receptors: the search for biocompatible sensor.

    PubMed

    Frączyk, Justyna; Mrozek, Agnieszka; Kamiński, Zbigniew J

    2010-11-01

    Structure-activity relationship (SAR) analysis was applied for studies of docking of colored ligands to library of artificial receptors formed by self-assembly of N-lipidated amino acids immobilised on the cellulose support. The studies show that the binding depends mainly on the structure of amino acid fragment but influence of N-lipidic fragment is less important.

  17. Precisely Designed Isopeptide Bridge-Crosslinking Endows Artificial Hydrolases with High Stability and Catalytic Activity under Extreme Denaturing Conditions.

    PubMed

    Bai, Yu; Wang, Chao; Liang, Guodong; Lai, Wenqing; Xue, Huifang; Ling, Yanbo; Cheng, Maosheng; Liu, Keliang

    2017-07-25

    Enzymes normally lose their activities under extreme conditions due to the dissociation of their active tertiary structure. If an enzyme could maintain its catalytic activity under non-physiological or denaturing conditions, it might be used in more applications in the pharmaceutical and chemical industries. Recently, we reported a coiled-coil six-helical bundle (6HB) structure as a scaffold for designing artificial hydrolytic enzymes. Here, intermolecular isopeptide bonds were incorporated to enhance the stability and activity of such biomolecules under denaturing conditions. These isopeptide bridge-tethered 6HB enzymes showed exceptional stability against unfolding and retained or even had increased catalytic activity for a model hydrolysis reaction under thermal and chemical denaturing conditions. Thus, isopeptide bond-tethering represents an efficient route to construct ultrastable artificial hydrolases, with promising potential to maintain biocatalysis under extreme conditions. © 2017 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  18. Fusion versus Bryan Cervical Disc in two-level cervical disc disease: a prospective, randomised study

    PubMed Central

    Nie, Lin; Zhang, Li; Hou, Yong

    2008-01-01

    In this prospective study, our aim was to compare the functional results and radiographic outcomes of fusion and Bryan Cervical Disc replacement in the treatment of two-level cervical disc disease. A total of 65 patients with two-level cervical disc disease were randomly assigned to two groups, those operated on with Bryan Cervical Disc replacement (31) and those operated on with anterior cervical fusion with an iliac crest autograft and plate (34). Clinical evaluation was carried out using the visual analogue scale (VAS), the Short Form 36 (SF-36) and the neck disability index (NDI) during a two year follow-up. Radiological evaluation sought evidence of range of motion, stability and subsidence of the prosthesis. Substantial reduction in NDI scores occurred in both groups, with greater percent improvement in the Bryan group (P = 0.023). The arm pain VAS score improvement was substantial in both groups. Bryan artificial cervical disc replacement seems reliable and safe in the treatment of patients with two-level cervical disc disease. PMID:18956190

  19. Photodynamic activity of the boronated chlorin e6 amide in artificial and cellular membranes.

    PubMed

    Antonenko, Yuri N; Kotova, Elena A; Omarova, Elena O; Rokitskaya, Tatyana I; Ol'shevskaya, Valentina A; Kalinin, Valery N; Nikitina, Roza G; Osipchuk, Julia S; Kaplan, Mikhail A; Ramonova, Alla A; Moisenovich, Mikhail M; Agapov, Igor I; Kirpichnikov, Mikhail P

    2014-03-01

    Photodynamic tumor-destroying activity of the boronated chlorin e6 derivative BACE (chlorin e6 13(1)-N-{2-[N-(1-carba-closo-dodecaboran-1-yl)methyl]aminoethyl}amide-15(2), 17(3)-dimethyl ester), previously described in Moisenovich et al. (2010) PLoS ONE 5(9) e12717, was shown here to be enormously higher than that of unsubstituted chlorin e6, being supported by the data on much higher photocytotoxicity of BACE in M-1 sarcoma cell culture. To validate membrane damaging effect as the basis of the enhanced tumoricidal activity, BACE was compared with unsubstituted chlorin e6 in the potency to photosensitize dye leakage from liposomes, transbilayer lipid flip-flop, inactivation of gramicidin A ionic channels in planar lipid membranes and erythrocyte hemolysis. In all the models comprising artificial and cellular membranes, the photodynamic effect of BACE exceeded that of chlorin e6. BACE substantially differed from chlorin e6 in the affinity to liposomes and erythrocytes, as monitored by fluorescence spectroscopy, flow cytometry and centrifugation. The results support the key role of membrane binding in the photodynamic effect of the boronated chlorin e6 amide.

  20. Emergence of a catalytic tetrad during evolution of a highly active artificial aldolase

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Obexer, Richard; Godina, Alexei; Garrabou, Xavier; Mittl, Peer R. E.; Baker, David; Griffiths, Andrew D.; Hilvert, Donald

    2017-01-01

    Designing catalysts that achieve the rates and selectivities of natural enzymes is a long-standing goal in protein chemistry. Here, we show that an ultrahigh-throughput droplet-based microfluidic screening platform can be used to improve a previously optimized artificial aldolase by an additional factor of 30 to give a >109 rate enhancement that rivals the efficiency of class I aldolases. The resulting enzyme catalyses a reversible aldol reaction with high stereoselectivity and tolerates a broad range of substrates. Biochemical and structural studies show that catalysis depends on a Lys-Tyr-Asn-Tyr tetrad that emerged adjacent to a computationally designed hydrophobic pocket during directed evolution. This constellation of residues is poised to activate the substrate by Schiff base formation, promote mechanistically important proton transfers and stabilize multiple transition states along a complex reaction coordinate. The emergence of such a sophisticated catalytic centre shows that there is nothing magical about the catalytic activities or mechanisms of naturally occurring enzymes, or the evolutionary process that gave rise to them.

  1. An artificial immune-activated neural network applied to brain 3D MRI segmentation.

    PubMed

    Younis, Akmal; Ibrahim, Mohamed; Kabuka, Mansur; John, Nigel

    2008-10-01

    In this paper, a new neural network model inspired by the biological immune system functions is presented. The model, termed Artificial Immune-Activated Neural Network (AIANN), extracts classification knowledge from a training data set, which is then used to classify input patterns or vectors. The AIANN is based on a neuron activation function whose behavior is conceptually modeled after the chemical bonds between the receptors and epitopes in the biological immune system. The bonding is controlled through an energy measure to ensure accurate recognition. The AIANN model was applied to the segmentation of 3-dimensional magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) data of the brain and a contextual basis was developed for the segmentation problem. Evaluation of the segmentation results was performed using both real MRI data obtained from the Center for Morphometric Analysis at Massachusetts General Hospital and simulated MRI data generated using the McGill University BrainWeb MRI simulator. Experimental results demonstrated that the AIANN model attained higher average results than those obtained using published methods for real MRI data and simulated MRI data, especially at low levels of noise.

  2. Ultrasonically extracted β-d-glucan from artificially cultivated mushroom, characteristic properties and antioxidant activity.

    PubMed

    Alzorqi, Ibrahim; Sudheer, Surya; Lu, Ting-Jang; Manickam, Sivakumar

    2017-03-01

    Ganoderma mushroom cultivated recently in Malaysia to produce chemically different nutritional fibers has attracted the attention of the local market. The extraction methods, molecular weight and degree of branching of (1-3; 1-6)-β-d-glucan polysaccharides is of prime importance to determine its antioxidant bioactivity. Therefore three extraction methods i.e. hot water extraction (HWE), soxhlet extraction (SE) and ultrasound assisted extraction (US) were employed to study the total content of (1-3; 1-6)-β-d-glucans, degree of branching, structural characteristics, monosaccharides composition, as well as the total yield of polysaccharides that could be obtained from the artificially cultivated Ganoderma. The physical characteristics by HPAEC-PAD, HPGPC and FTIR, as well as the antioxidant in vitro assays of DPPH scavenging activity and ferric reducing power (FRAP) indicated that (1-3; 1-6)-β-d-glucans of Malaysian mushroom have better antioxidant activity, higher molecular weight and optimal degree of branching when extracted by US in comparison with conventional methods.

  3. Artificial activation of bovine and equine oocytes with cycloheximide, roscovitine, strontium, or 6-dimethylaminopurine in low or high calcium concentrations.

    PubMed

    Fernandes, Claudia Barbosa; Devito, Liani Gasparini; Martins, Lilian Rigatto; Blanco, Ieda Dala Pria; de Lima Neto, João Ferreria; Tsuribe, Patricia Myakawa; Gonçalves, Camila Gabriela Pereria; da Cruz Landim-Alvarenga, Fernanda

    2014-08-01

    Knowledge on parthenogenetic activation of oocytes is important to improve the efficiency of nuclear transfer (NT) and intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) because artificial activation of oocyte (AOA) is an essential step to achieve embryo production. Although different procedures for AOA have been established, the efficiency of in vitro production of embryos remains low, especially in equines and Bos taurus bovines. In an attempt to improve the techniques of NT and ICSI in bovine and equine species, we tested different combinations of drugs that had different mechanisms of action for the parthenogenetic activation of oocytes in these animals. The oocytes were collected, in vitro matured for 24 to 30 h and activated artificially, in the presence of low or high concentrations of calcium, with combinations of calcium ionophore (ionomycin) with cycloheximide, roscovitine, strontium, or 6-dimethylaminopurine (6-DMAP). For assessment of activation rates, oocytes were stained with Hoechst 33342 and observed under an inverted microscope. We showed that all combinations of drugs were equally efficient in activating bovine oocytes, with the best results obtained when high concentrations of calcium were adopted. For equine oocytes, high concentrations of calcium were not beneficial for the parthenogenetic activation and the combination of ionomycin with either 6-DMAP or roscovitine was effective in inducing artificial activation of oocytes. We believe that our preliminary findings provide some clues for the development of a better AOA protocol to be used with these species.

  4. Beyond the Standard Scheme for Relativistic Spectral Line Profiles from Black Hole Accretion Discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Karas, Vladimir; Sochora, V.; Svoboda, J.; Dovciak, M.

    2011-09-01

    Spectral features can arise by reflection of coronal X-rays on a black hole accretion disc. The resulting profile bears various imprints of strong gravitational field acting on the light emitting gas. We study if the currently discussed instruments on-board X-ray satellites will be able to reveal the departure of the line radial emissivity from a simple smooth power-law function, which is often assumed in data fitting and interpretation. Such a departure can be a result of excess emission occurring at a certain distance. This could be used to study variations with radius of the line production or to constrain the position of the inner edge of the accretion disc. By simulating artificial data from a bright active galactic nucleus we show that the required sensitivity and energy resolution could be reached with Large Area Detector of the proposed LOFT mission.

  5. Effect of signs of oestrus, disease stressors and cow activity on pregnancy rate following artificial insemination.

    PubMed

    Bijker, I; Christley, R M; Smith, R F; Dobson, H

    2015-04-18

    The objective was to examine (a) how pregnancy rate on one farm (500 cows) was affected by signs of oestrus and disease stressors and (b) whether pregnancy rate could be maximised by considering cow activity. The signs of oestrus and timings were recorded at artificial insemination (AI), and cow activity was monitored by neck collars. Pregnancy rate tended to be higher in animals that displayed standing oestrus (35 v 26 per cent; P=0.06) but was 10 per cent lower in those cows with an elevated somatic cell count (SCC; >200,000 cells/ml milk) within 0-4 or 4-8 weeks prior to AI (P=0.01 and 0.05, respectively), irrespective of the incidence of clinical mastitis prior to AI. Cow activity data were available for 525 inseminations (from a total of 1299). The mean interval from increased activity to AI in all cows (11 hours 32 minutes; 95 per cent CI 10 hours 40 minutes to 12 hours 24 minutes) was not different for cows that did or did not establish a pregnancy (P=0.90). The pregnancy rate improved to the average of unaffected cows if AI was delayed by about eight hours in animals with an elevated SCC 0-4 weeks prior to AI (P=0.025), indicating that, in cows with prior elevated SCC, AI could be repeated approximately eight hours later to achieve maximum pregnancy rates. British Veterinary Association.

  6. Effect of Light-Activated Tooth Whitening on Color Change Relative to Color of Artificially Stained Teeth.

    PubMed

    Kwon, So Ran; Kurti, Steven R; Oyoyo, Udochukwu; Li, Yiming

    2015-01-01

    There is still controversy as to the efficacy of light activation used in tooth whitening. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of light activation on tooth color change relative to the artificial dye color. Extracted human third molars (160) were randomly distributed into eight groups of 20 specimens each based on artificial staining and use of light activation. All groups received three 45-minute sessions of in-office whitening at 3-day intervals. Color measurements were performed with an intraoral spectrophotometer at baseline prior to staining (T0), after artificial staining (T1), 1-day--(T2), and 1-week--(T3) post-whitening. Color differences were calculated relative to after artificial staining color parameters (L*1, a*1, b*1) with the use of a software analysis program enabling synchronization of two images. Within the same staining groups, the light-activated samples exhibited a greater color change than their nonlight-activated counterparts. However, only in the case of the yellow-stained samples at 1-day post-whitening was there a significant difference between the nonlight-activated and light-activated groups (Tukey's post hoc multiple comparison test for pairwise comparisons, p < 0.05). Light activation is a valid method for enhancing the efficacy of tooth whitening with respect to overall color change and works best with yellow stains. Light activation is a valid method for enhancing the efficacy of tooth whitening with respect to overall color change and works best with yellow stains.

  7. Disc herniations in the National Football League.

    PubMed

    Gray, Benjamin L; Buchowski, Jacob M; Bumpass, David B; Lehman, Ronald A; Mall, Nathan A; Matava, Matthew J

    2013-10-15

    Retrospective analysis of a prospectively collected database. To determine the overall incidence, location, and type of disc herniations in professional football players to target treatment issues and prevention. Disc herniations represent a common and debilitating injury to the professional athlete. The NFL's (National Football League's) Sports Injury Monitoring System is a surveillance database created to monitor the league for all injuries, including injuries to the cervical, thoracic, and lumbar spine. A retrospective analysis was performed on all disc herniations to the cervical, thoracic, and lumbar spine during a 12-season period (2000–2012) using the NFL's surveillance database. The primary data points included the location of the injury, player position, activity at time of injury, and playing time lost due to injury. During the 12 seasons, 275 disc herniations occurred in the spine. In regard to location, 76% occurred in the lumbar spine and most frequently affected the L5–S1 disc. The offensive linemen were most frequently injured. As expected, blocking was the activity that caused most injuries. Lumbar disc herniations rose in prevalence and had a mean loss of playing time of more than half the season (11 games). Thoracic disc herniations led to the largest mean number of days lost overall, whereas players with cervical disc herniations missed the most practices. Disc herniations represent a significant cause of morbidity in the NFL. Although much attention is placed on spinal cord injuries, preventive measures targeting the cervical, thoracic, and lumbar spine may help to reduce the overall incidence of these debilitating injuries. N/A

  8. Novel activation domain derived from Che-1 cofactor coupled with the artificial protein Jazz drives utrophin upregulation.

    PubMed

    Desantis, Agata; Onori, Annalisa; Di Certo, Maria Grazia; Mattei, Elisabetta; Fanciulli, Maurizio; Passananti, Claudio; Corbi, Nicoletta

    2009-02-01

    Our aim is to upregulate the expression level of the dystrophin related gene utrophin in Duchenne muscular dystrophy, thus complementing the lack of dystrophin functions. To this end, we have engineered synthetic zinc finger based transcription factors. We have previously shown that the artificial three-zinc finger protein named Jazz fused with the Vp16 activation domain, is able to bind utrophin promoter A and to increase the endogenous level of utrophin in transgenic mice. Here, we report on an innovative artificial protein, named CJ7, that consists of Jazz DNA binding domain fused to a novel activation domain derived from the regulatory multivalent adaptor protein Che-1/AATF. This transcriptional activation domain is 100 amino acids in size and it is very powerful as compared to the Vp16 activation domain. We show that CJ7 protein efficiently promotes transcription and accumulation of the acetylated form of histone H3 on the genomic utrophin promoter locus.

  9. Effect of Cryopreservation on Canine and Human Activated Nucleus Pulposus Cells: A Feasibility Study for Cell Therapy of the Intervertebral Disc

    PubMed Central

    Tanaka, Masahiro; Hiyama, Akihiko; Arai, Fumiyuki; Nakajima, Daisuke; Nukaga, Tadashi; Nakai, Tomoko; Mochida, Joji

    2013-01-01

    Abstract It has been shown that coculture of bone marrow–derived stromal cells (BMSCs) with intervertebral disc (IVD) nucleus pulposus (NP) cells significantly activates the biological characteristics of NP cells in animal models and in humans. We therefore predicted that activated NP cells would be a useful graft source for cellular transplantation therapy in the treatment of degenerative IVDs. However, the activation protocol is based on fresh isolation and activation of NP cells, which limits the timing of clinical application. Cell transplantation therapy could be offered to more patients than is now possible if activated NP cells could be transplanted as and when required by the condition of the patient. No study has investigated the effect of cryopreservation on NP cells after enzymatic isolation. We investigated the effects of cryopreservation of canine and human NP cells in both cell and tissue form before coculture with autologous BMSCs. Cell viability, proliferation, glycosaminoglycan production, aggrecan transcriptional activity, colony generation, and gene expression profile of the cells after cryopreservation and subsequent coculture were analyzed. The influence of cryopreservation on cell chromosomal abnormalities and tumorigenesis was also studied. The results showed that there were no clear differences between the noncryopreserved and cryopreserved cells in terms of cell viability, proliferation capacity, and capacity to synthesize extracellular matrix. Furthermore, the cells showed no apparent chromosomal abnormalities or tumorigenic ability and exhibited similar patterns of gene expression. These findings suggest that by using cryopreservation, it may be possible to transplant activated NP cells upon request for patients' needs. PMID:23914334

  10. Intervertebral disc properties: challenges for biodevices.

    PubMed

    Costi, John J; Freeman, Brian J C; Elliott, Dawn M

    2011-05-01

    Intervertebral disc biodevices that employ motion-preservation strategies (e.g., nucleus replacement, total disc replacement and posterior stabilization devices) are currently in use or in development. However, their long-term performance is unknown and only a small number of randomized controlled trials have been conducted. In this article, we discuss the following biodevices: interbody cages, nuclear pulposus replacements, total disc replacements and posterior dynamic stabilization devices, as well as future biological treatments. These biodevices restore some function to the motion segment; however, contrary to expectations, the risk of adjacent-level degeneration does not appear to have been reduced. The short-term challenge is to replicate the complex biomechanical function of the motion segment (e.g., biphasic, viscoelastic behavior and nonlinearity) to improve the quality of motion and minimize adjacent level problems, while ensuring biodevice longevity for the younger, more active patient. Biological strategies for regeneration and repair of disc tissue are being developed and these offer exciting opportunities (and challenges) for the longer term. Responsible introduction and rigorous assessment of these new technologies are required. In this article, we will describe the properties of the disc, explore biodevices currently in use for the surgical treatment of low back pain (with an emphasis on lumbar total disc replacement) and discuss future directions for biological treatments. Finally, we will assess the challenges ahead for the next generation of biodevices designed to replace the disc.

  11. Comparison of microdilution and disc diffusion methods in assessing the in vitro activity of fluconazole and Melaleuca alternifolia (tea tree) oil against vaginal Candida isolates.

    PubMed

    Ergin, A; Arikan, S

    2002-10-01

    The in vitro activity of fluconazole and Melaleuca alternifolia (tea tree) oil was evaluated against 99 vaginal Candida strains by the broth microdilution and disc diffusion methods. The microdilution method was performed in accordance with NCCLS-M27A guidelines. An investigational method was used for the disc diffusion test. Fluconazole and tea tree oil minimum inhibitory concentrations (MICs) obtained at 48 h tended to increase 1- to 2-fold or remain the same compared to 24 h readings for most of the isolates tested. C. krusei and C. norvegensis had significantly higher MICs and smaller inhibition zones for fluconazole compared to other species. Tea tree oil MICs were found to be similar, in general, for all Candida spp. tested. The geometric mean MIC of tea tree oil for all isolates was 2.2% (range, 0.25-4%) at 24 h and 3.0% (range, 1-8%) at 48 h. Tea tree oil mean inhibition zone diameter was 24 mm (range, 14-42 mm) at 24 h and 15.8 mm (range, 10-35 mm) at 48 h. In vitro activity of tea tree oil against fluconazole-resistant Candida strains was of particular interest. The isolates had similar tea tree oil MICs and inhibition zone diameters regardless of their fluconazole susceptibility profile. Tea tree oil MIC ranges (inhibition zone diameter ranges) were 2-4% (12-21 mm) and 2% (35 mm) at 48 h for C. krusei and C. norvegensis, respectively. These results suggest that tea tree oil MICs of the fluconazole-resistant isolates are comparable to those of fluconazole-susceptible isolates. This in vitro finding is promising for potential use of topical tea tree oil formulations in the treatment of candidiasis due to fluconazole-resistant strains.

  12. Seasonal prediction of tropical cyclone activity over the north Indian Ocean using three artificial neural networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nath, Sankar; Kotal, S. D.; Kundu, P. K.

    2016-12-01

    Three artificial neural network (ANN) methods, namely, multilayer perceptron (MLP), radial basis function (RBF) and generalized regression neural network (GRNN) are utilized to predict the seasonal tropical cyclone (TC) activity over the north Indian Ocean (NIO) during the post-monsoon season (October, November, December). The frequency of TC and large-scale climate variables derived from NCEP/NCAR reanalysis dataset of resolution 2.5° × 2.5° were analyzed for the period 1971-2013. Data for the years 1971-2002 were used for the development of the models, which were tested with independent sample data for the year 2003-2013. Using the correlation analysis, the five large-scale climate variables, namely, geopotential height at 500 hPa, relative humidity at 500 hPa, sea-level pressure, zonal wind at 700 hPa and 200 hPa for the preceding month September, are selected as potential predictors of the post-monsoon season TC activity. The result reveals that all the three different ANN methods are able to provide satisfactory forecast in terms of the various metrics, such as root mean-square error (RMSE), standard deviation (SD), correlation coefficient ( r), and bias and index of agreement ( d). Additionally, leave-one-out cross validation (LOOCV) method is also performed and the forecast skill is evaluated. The results show that the MLP model is found to be superior to the other two models (RBF, GRNN). The (MLP) is expected to be very useful to operational forecasters for prediction of TC activity.

  13. Seeing by Touch: Evaluation of a Soft Biologically-Inspired Artificial Fingertip in Real-Time Active Touch

    PubMed Central

    Assaf, Tareq; Roke, Calum; Rossiter, Jonathan; Pipe, Tony; Melhuish, Chris

    2014-01-01

    Effective tactile sensing for artificial platforms remains an open issue in robotics. This study investigates the performance of a soft biologically-inspired artificial fingertip in active exploration tasks. The fingertip sensor replicates the mechanisms within human skin and offers a robust solution that can be used both for tactile sensing and gripping/manipulating objects. The softness of the optical sensor's contact surface also allows safer interactions with objects. High-level tactile features such as edges are extrapolated from the sensor's output and the information is used to generate a tactile image. The work presented in this paper aims to investigate and evaluate this artificial fingertip for 2D shape reconstruction. The sensor was mounted on a robot arm to allow autonomous exploration of different objects. The sensor and a number of human participants were then tested for their abilities to track the raised perimeters of different planar objects and compared. By observing the technique and accuracy of the human subjects, simple but effective parameters were determined in order to evaluate the artificial system's performance. The results prove the capability of the sensor in such active exploration tasks, with a comparable performance to the human subjects despite it using tactile data alone whereas the human participants were also able to use proprioceptive cues. PMID:24514881

  14. Lumbar Disc Degenerative Disease: Disc Degeneration Symptoms and Magnetic Resonance Image Findings

    PubMed Central

    Saleem, Shafaq; Rehmani, Muhammad Asim Khan; Raees, Aisha; Alvi, Arsalan Ahmad; Ashraf, Junaid

    2013-01-01

    Study Design Cross sectional and observational. Purpose To evaluate the different aspects of lumbar disc degenerative disc disease and relate them with magnetic resonance image (MRI) findings and symptoms. Overview of Literature Lumbar disc degenerative disease has now been proven as the most common cause of low back pain throughout the world. It may present as disc herniation, lumbar spinal stenosis, facet joint arthropathy or any combination. Presenting symptoms of lumbar disc degeneration are lower back pain and sciatica which may be aggravated by standing, walking, bending, straining and coughing. Methods This study was conducted from January 2012 to June 2012. Study was conducted on the diagnosed patients of lumbar disc degeneration. Diagnostic criteria were based upon abnormal findings in MRI. Patients with prior back surgery, spine fractures, sacroiliac arthritis, metabolic bone disease, spinal infection, rheumatoid arthritis, active malignancy, and pregnancy were excluded. Results During the targeted months, 163 patients of lumbar disc degeneration with mean age of 43.92±11.76 years, came into Neurosurgery department. Disc degeneration was most commonly present at the level of L4/L5 105 (64.4%).Commonest types of disc degeneration were disc herniation 109 (66.9%) and lumbar spinal stenosis 37 (22.7%). Spondylolisthesis was commonly present at L5/S1 10 (6.1%) and associated mostly with lumbar spinal stenosis 7 (18.9%). Conclusions Results reported the frequent occurrence of lumbar disc degenerative disease in advance age. Research efforts should endeavor to reduce risk factors and improve the quality of life. PMID:24353850

  15. Synthesis and biological activity of artificial mRNA prepared with novel phosphorylating reagents

    PubMed Central

    Nagata, Seigo; Hamasaki, Tomohiro; Uetake, Koichi; Masuda, Hirofumi; Takagaki, Kazuchika; Oka, Natsuhisa; Wada, Takeshi; Ohgi, Tadaaki; Yano, Junichi

    2010-01-01

    Though medicines that target mRNA are under active investigation, there has been little or no effort to develop mRNA itself as a medicine. Here, we report the synthesis of a 130-nt mRNA sequence encoding a 33-amino-acid peptide that includes the sequence of glucagon-like peptide-1, a peptide that stimulates glucose-dependent insulin secretion from the pancreas. The synthesis method used, which had previously been developed in our laboratory, was based on the use of 2-cyanoethoxymethyl as the 2′-hydroxy protecting group. We also developed novel, highly reactive phosphotriester pyrophosphorylating reagents to pyrophosphorylate the 5′-end of the 130-mer RNA in preparation for capping. We completed the synthesis of the artificial mRNA by the enzymatic addition of a 5′-cap and a 3′-poly(A) tail to the pyrophosphorylated 130-mer and showed that the resulting mRNA supported protein synthesis in a cell-free system and in whole cells. As far as we know, this is the first time that mRNA has been prepared from a chemically synthesized RNA sequence. As well as providing a research tool for the intracellular expression of peptides, the technology described here may be used for the production of mRNA for medical applications. PMID:20660478

  16. DETECTING ACTIVE GALACTIC NUCLEI USING MULTI-FILTER IMAGING DATA. II. INCORPORATING ARTIFICIAL NEURAL NETWORKS

    SciTech Connect

    Dong, X. Y.; De Robertis, M. M.

    2013-10-01

    This is the second paper of the series Detecting Active Galactic Nuclei Using Multi-filter Imaging Data. In this paper we review shapelets, an image manipulation algorithm, which we employ to adjust the point-spread function (PSF) of galaxy images. This technique is used to ensure the image in each filter has the same and sharpest PSF, which is the preferred condition for detecting AGNs using multi-filter imaging data as we demonstrated in Paper I of this series. We apply shapelets on Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope Legacy Survey Wide Survey ugriz images. Photometric parameters such as effective radii, integrated fluxes within certain radii, and color gradients are measured on the shapelets-reconstructed images. These parameters are used by artificial neural networks (ANNs) which yield: photometric redshift with an rms of 0.026 and a regression R-value of 0.92; galaxy morphological types with an uncertainty less than 2 T types for z ≤ 0.1; and identification of galaxies as AGNs with 70% confidence, star-forming/starburst (SF/SB) galaxies with 90% confidence, and passive galaxies with 70% confidence for z ≤ 0.1. The incorporation of ANNs provides a more reliable technique for identifying AGN or SF/SB candidates, which could be very useful for large-scale multi-filter optical surveys that also include a modest set of spectroscopic data sufficient to train neural networks.

  17. Constitutive cellulase production from glucose using the recombinant Trichoderma reesei strain overexpressing an artificial transcription activator.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xiaoyue; Li, Yonghao; Zhao, Xinqing; Bai, Fengwu

    2017-01-01

    The high cost of cellulase production presents biggest challenge in biomass deconstruction. Cellulase production by Trichoderma reesei using low cost carbon source is of great interest. In this study, an artificial transcription activator containing the Cre1 binding domain linked to the Xyr1 effector and binding domains was designed and constitutively overexpressed in T. reesei RUT C30. The recombinant strain T. reesei zxy-2 displayed constitutive cellulase production using glucose as a sole carbon source, and the production titer was 12.75-fold of that observed with T. reesei RUT C30 in shake flask culture. Moreover, FPase and xylanase titers of 2.63 and 108.72IU/mL, respectively, were achieved using glucose as sole carbon source within 48h in a 7-L fermenter by batch fermentation using T. reesei zxy-2. The crude enzyme obtained was used to hydrolyze alkali pretreated corn stover, and a high glucose yield of 99.18% was achieved. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  18. Investigation of cryogenic rupture disc design

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Keough, J. B.; Oldland, A. H.

    1973-01-01

    Rupture disc designs of both the active (command actuated) and passive (pressure ruptured) types were evaluated for performance characteristics at cryogenic temperatures and for capability to operate in a variety of cryogens, including gaseous and liquid fluorine. The test results, coupled with information from literature and industry searches, were used to establish a statement of design criteria and recommended practices for application of rupture discs to cryogenic rocket propellant feed and vent systems.

  19. Bio-inspired electron-delivering system for reductive activation of dioxygen at metal centres towards artificial flavoenzymes

    PubMed Central

    Roux, Yoann; Ricoux, Rémy; Avenier, Frédéric; Mahy, Jean-Pierre

    2015-01-01

    Development of artificial systems, capable of delivering electrons to metal-based catalysts for the reductive activation of dioxygen, has been proven very difficult for decades, constituting a major scientific lock for the elaboration of environmentally friendly oxidation processes. Here we demonstrate that the incorporation of a flavin mononucleotide (FMN) in a water-soluble polymer, bearing a locally hydrophobic microenvironment, allows the efficient reduction of the FMN by NADH. This supramolecular entity is then capable of catalysing a very fast single-electron reduction of manganese(III) porphyrin by splitting the electron pair issued from NADH. This is fully reminiscent of the activity of natural reductases such as the cytochrome P450 reductases with kinetic parameters, which are three orders of magnitude faster compared with other artificial systems. Finally, we show as a proof of concept that the reduced manganese porphyrin activates dioxygen and catalyses the oxidation of organic substrates in water. PMID:26419885

  20. Intradiscal pressure measurements in normal discs, compressed discs and compressed discs treated with axial posterior disc distraction: an experimental study on the rabbit lumbar spine model.

    PubMed

    Guehring, Thorsten; Unglaub, Frank; Lorenz, Helga; Omlor, Georg; Wilke, Hans-Joachim; Kroeber, Markus W

    2006-05-01

    Intervertebral disc (IVD) pressure measurement is an appropriate method for characterizing spinal loading conditions. However, there is no human or animal model that provides sufficient IVD pressure data. The aim of our study was to establish physiological pressure values in the rabbit lumbar spine and to determine whether temporary external disc compression and distraction were associated with pressure changes. Measurements were done using a microstructure-based fibreoptic sensor. Data were collected in five control rabbits (N, measurement lying prone at segment L3/4 at day 28), five rabbits with 28 days of axial compression (C, measurement at day 28) and three rabbits with 28 days of axial compression and following 28 days of axial distraction (D, measurement at day 56). Disc compression and distraction was verified by disc height in lateral radiographs. The controls (N) showed a level-related range between 0.25 MPa-0.45 MPa. The IVD pressure was highest at level L3/4 (0.42 MPa; range 0.38-0.45) with a decrease in both cranial and caudal adjacent segments. The result for C was a significant decrease in IVD pressure (0.31 MPa) when compared with controls (P=0.009). D showed slightly higher median IVD pressure (0.32 MPa) compared to C, but significantly lower levels when compared with N (P=0.037). Our results indicate a high range of physiological IVD pressure at different levels of the lumbar rabbit spine. Temporary disc compression reduces pressure when compared with controls. These data support the hypothesis that temporary external compression leads to moderate disc degeneration as a result of degradation of water-binding disc matrix or affected active pumping mechanisms of nutrients into the disc. A stabilization of IVD pressure in discs treated with temporary distraction was observed.

  1. Artificial oocyte activation in intracytoplasmic sperm injection cycles using testicular sperm in human in vitro fertilization.

    PubMed

    Kang, Hee Jung; Lee, Sun-Hee; Park, Yong-Seog; Lim, Chun Kyu; Ko, Duck Sung; Yang, Kwang Moon; Park, Dong-Wook

    2015-06-01

    Artificial oocyte activation (AOA) is an effective method to avoid total fertilization failure in human in vitro fertilization-embryo transfer (IVF-ET) cycles. AOA performed using a calcium ionophore can induce calcium oscillation in oocytes and initiate the fertilization process. We evaluated the usefulness of AOA with a calcium ionophore in cases of total fertilization failure in previous cycles and in cases of severe male factor infertility patients with non-motile spermatozoa after pentoxifylline (PF) treatment. The present study describes 29 intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI)-AOA cycles involving male factor infertility at Cheil General Hospital from January 2006 to June 2013. Patients were divided into two groups (control, n=480; AOA, n=29) depending on whether or not AOA using a calcium ionophore (A23187) was performed after testicular sperm extraction-ICSI (TESE-ICSI). The AOA group was further split into subgroups according to sperm motility after PF treatment: i.e., motile sperm-injected (n=12) and non-motile sperm-injected (n=17) groups (total n=29 cycles). The good embryo rate (52.3% vs. 66.9%), pregnancy rate (20.7% vs. 52.1%), and delivery rate (10.3% vs. 40.8%) were lower in the PF/AOA group than in the control group. When evaluating the effects of restoration of sperm motility after PF treatment on clinical outcomes there was no difference in fertilization rate (66.6% vs. 64.7% in non-motile and motile sperm, respectively), pregnancy rate (17.6% vs. 33.3%), or delivery rate (5.9% vs. 16.7%) between the two groups. We suggest that oocyte activation is a useful method to ensure fertilization in TESE-ICSI cycles regardless of restoration of sperm motility after PF treatment. AOA may be useful in selected patients who have a low fertilization rate or total fertilization failure.

  2. Artificial oocyte activation in intracytoplasmic sperm injection cycles using testicular sperm in human in vitro fertilization

    PubMed Central

    Kang, Hee Jung; Lee, Sun-Hee; Park, Yong-Seog; Lim, Chun Kyu; Ko, Duck Sung; Yang, Kwang Moon

    2015-01-01

    Objective Artificial oocyte activation (AOA) is an effective method to avoid total fertilization failure in human in vitro fertilization-embryo transfer (IVF-ET) cycles. AOA performed using a calcium ionophore can induce calcium oscillation in oocytes and initiate the fertilization process. We evaluated the usefulness of AOA with a calcium ionophore in cases of total fertilization failure in previous cycles and in cases of severe male factor infertility patients with non-motile spermatozoa after pentoxifylline (PF) treatment. Methods The present study describes 29 intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI)-AOA cycles involving male factor infertility at Cheil General Hospital from January 2006 to June 2013. Patients were divided into two groups (control, n=480; AOA, n=29) depending on whether or not AOA using a calcium ionophore (A23187) was performed after testicular sperm extraction-ICSI (TESE-ICSI). The AOA group was further split into subgroups according to sperm motility after PF treatment: i.e., motile sperm-injected (n=12) and non-motile sperm-injected (n=17) groups (total n=29 cycles). Results The good embryo rate (52.3% vs. 66.9%), pregnancy rate (20.7% vs. 52.1%), and delivery rate (10.3% vs. 40.8%) were lower in the PF/AOA group than in the control group. When evaluating the effects of restoration of sperm motility after PF treatment on clinical outcomes there was no difference in fertilization rate (66.6% vs. 64.7% in non-motile and motile sperm, respectively), pregnancy rate (17.6% vs. 33.3%), or delivery rate (5.9% vs. 16.7%) between the two groups. Conclusion We suggest that oocyte activation is a useful method to ensure fertilization in TESE-ICSI cycles regardless of restoration of sperm motility after PF treatment. AOA may be useful in selected patients who have a low fertilization rate or total fertilization failure. PMID:26161332

  3. The case for cases B and C: intrinsic hydrogen line ratios of the broad-line region of active galactic nuclei, reddenings, and accretion disc sizes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gaskell, C. Martin

    2017-01-01

    Low-redshift active galactic nuclei (AGNs) with extremely blue optical spectral indices are shown to have a mean, velocity-averaged, broad-line Hα/Hβ ratio of ≈2.72 ± 0.04, consistent with a Baker-Menzel Case B value. Comparison of a wide range of properties of the very bluest AGNs with those of a luminosity-matched subset of the Dong et al. blue AGN sample indicates that the only difference is the internal reddening. Ultraviolet fluxes are brighter for the bluest AGNs by an amount consistent with the flat AGN reddening curve of Gaskell et al. (2004). The lack of a significant difference in the GALEX (FUV-NUV) colour index strongly rules out a steep SMC-like reddening curve and also argues against an intrinsically harder spectrum for the bluest AGNs. For very blue AGNs the Lyα/Hβ ratio is also consistent with being the Case B value. The Case B ratios provide strong support for the self-shielded broad-line model of Gaskell, Klimek & Nazarova. It is proposed that the greatly enhanced Lyα/Hβ ratio at very high velocities is a consequence of continuum fluorescence in the Lyman lines (Case C). Reddenings of AGNs mean that the far-UV luminosity is often underestimated by up to an order of magnitude. This is a major factor causing the discrepancies between measured accretion disc sizes and the predictions of simple accretion disc theory. Dust covering fractions for most AGNs are lower than has been estimated. The total mass in lower mass supermassive black holes must be greater than hitherto estimated.

  4. Does the Occupational Activity Level Affect the Quality of Life of Patients Treated with Epidural Steroid Injections for Lumbar Disc Herniations?

    PubMed Central

    Pai, Sudhir

    2012-01-01

    Study Design Prospective cohort study. Purpose To determine whether there was any change in the quality of life of patients in sedentary/non sedentary occupations treated with epidural steroid injection for lumbar disc herniations using the 8 components of the SF 36 questionnaire.Overview of Literature: No previously done similar study published. Overview of Literature No previously done similar study published. Methods Ninety patients comprising sedentary and non sedentary occupations with lumbar disc herniations on magnetic resonance imaging who were treated with epidural steroid injection at St. John's Hospital Bangalore who met the Spinal Outcomes Research Trial eligibility criteria from April 2009 to May 2010. Results Of the 90 patients evaluated 44 were of Sedentary and 46 were of non sedentary activity levels, At 6 months primary outcomes physical functioning (p = 0.573, in difference between sedentary and non sedentary, improvement p = 0.001) energy/fatigue (difference between the two p = 0.917, improvement p = 0.001), emotional well being (difference p = 0.912, improvement, p = 0.001), social functioning (difference p = 0.523, improvement p = 0.232), pain (difference p = 0.535, improvement p = 0.001), general health (difference p = 0.738, improvement p < 0.001). Conclusions There was a statistically significant improvement in patients of both the sedentary and non sedentary groups p < 0.001 in all components of the SF36 in both sedentary and non sedentary patients except social functioning where the improvement was not statistically significant, and there was no significant difference between non sedentary and sedentary populations over time. PMID:22708017

  5. Does the occupational activity level affect the quality of life of patients treated with epidural steroid injections for lumbar disc herniations?

    PubMed

    Mhaskar, Vikram Arun; Pai, Sudhir

    2012-06-01

    Prospective cohort study. To determine whether there was any change in the quality of life of patients in sedentary/non sedentary occupations treated with epidural steroid injection for lumbar disc herniations using the 8 components of the SF 36 questionnaire.Overview of Literature: No previously done similar study published. No previously done similar study published. Ninety patients comprising sedentary and non sedentary occupations with lumbar disc herniations on magnetic resonance imaging who were treated with epidural steroid injection at St. John's Hospital Bangalore who met the Spinal Outcomes Research Trial eligibility criteria from April 2009 to May 2010. Of the 90 patients evaluated 44 were of Sedentary and 46 were of non sedentary activity levels, At 6 months primary outcomes physical functioning (p = 0.573, in difference between sedentary and non sedentary, improvement p = 0.001) energy/fatigue (difference between the two p = 0.917, improvement p = 0.001), emotional well being (difference p = 0.912, improvement, p = 0.001), social functioning (difference p = 0.523, improvement p = 0.232), pain (difference p = 0.535, improvement p = 0.001), general health (difference p = 0.738, improvement p < 0.001). There was a statistically significant improvement in patients of both the sedentary and non sedentary groups p < 0.001 in all components of the SF36 in both sedentary and non sedentary patients except social functioning where the improvement was not statistically significant, and there was no significant difference between non sedentary and sedentary populations over time.

  6. The case for cases B and C: intrinsic hydrogen line ratios of the broad-line region of active galactic nuclei, reddenings, and accretion disc sizes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gaskell, C. Martin

    2017-05-01

    Low-redshift active galactic nuclei (AGNs) with extremely blue optical spectral indices are shown to have a mean, velocity-averaged, broad-line Hα/Hβ ratio of ≈2.72 ± 0.04, consistent with a Baker-Menzel Case B value. Comparison of a wide range of properties of the very bluest AGNs with those of a luminosity-matched subset of the Dong et al. blue AGN sample indicates that the only difference is the internal reddening. Ultraviolet fluxes are brighter for the bluest AGNs by an amount consistent with the flat AGN reddening curve of Gaskell et al. The lack of a significant difference in the GALEX (far-ultraviolet-near-ultraviolet) colour index strongly rules out a steep Small Magellanic Cloud-like reddening curve and also argues against an intrinsically harder spectrum for the bluest AGNs. For very blue AGNs, the Ly α/Hβ ratio is also consistent with being the Case B value. The Case B ratios provide strong support for the self-shielded broad-line model of Gaskell, Klimek & Nazarova. It is proposed that the greatly enhanced Ly α/Hβ ratio at very high velocities is a consequence of continuum fluorescence in the Lyman lines (Case C). Reddenings of AGNs mean that the far-UV luminosity is often underestimated by up to an order of magnitude. This is a major factor causing the discrepancies between measured accretion disc sizes and the predictions of simple accretion disc theory. Dust covering fractions for most AGNs are lower than has been estimated. The total mass in lower mass supermassive black holes must be greater than hitherto estimated.

  7. Reconstructing the star formation history of the Milky Way disc(s) from chemical abundances

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Snaith, O.; Haywood, M.; Di Matteo, P.; Lehnert, M. D.; Combes, F.; Katz, D.; Gómez, A.

    2015-06-01

    We develop a chemical evolution model to study the star formation history of the Milky Way. Our model assumes that the Milky Way has formed from a closed-box-like system in the inner regions, while the outer parts of the disc have experienced some accretion. Unlike the usual procedure, we do not fix the star formation prescription (e.g. Kennicutt law) to reproduce the chemical abundance trends. Instead, we fit the abundance trends with age to recover the star formation history of the Galaxy. Our method enables us to recover the star formation history of the Milky Way in the first Gyrs with unprecedented accuracy in the inner (R < 7-8 kpc) and outer (R > 9-10 kpc) discs, as sampled in the solar vicinity. We show that half the stellar mass formed during the thick-disc phase in the inner galaxy during the first 4-5 Gyr. This phase was followed by a significant dip in star formation activity (at 8-9 Gyr) and a period of roughly constant lower-level star formation for the remaining 8 Gyr. The thick-disc phase has produced as many metals in 4 Gyr as the thin-disc phase in the remaining 8 Gyr. Our results suggest that a closed-box model is able to fit all the available constraints in the inner disc. A closed-box system is qualitatively equivalent to a regime where the accretion rate maintains a high gas fraction in the inner disc at high redshift. In these conditions the SFR is mainly governed by the high turbulence of the interstellar medium. By z ~ 1 it is possible that most of the accretion takes place in the outer disc, while the star formation activity in the inner disc is mostly sustained by the gas that is not consumed during the thick-disc phase and the continuous ejecta from earlier generations of stars. The outer disc follows a star formation history very similar to that of the inner disc, although initiated at z ~ 2, about 2 Gyr before the onset of the thin-disc formation in the inner disc.

  8. Holographic optical disc

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhou, Gan; An, Xin; Pu, Allen; Psaltis, Demetri; Mok, Fai H.

    1999-11-01

    The holographic disc is a high capacity, disk-based data storage device that can provide the performance for next generation mass data storage needs. With a projected capacity approaching 1 terabit on a single 12 cm platter, the holographic disc has the potential to become a highly efficient storage hardware for data warehousing applications. The high readout rate of holographic disc makes it especially suitable for generating multiple, high bandwidth data streams such as required for network server computers. Multimedia applications such as interactive video and HDTV can also potentially benefit from the high capacity and fast data access of holographic memory.

  9. Disc replacement using Pro-Disc C versus fusion: a prospective randomised and controlled radiographic and clinical study

    PubMed Central

    Ahlhelm, F.; Pitzen, T.; Steudel, W. I.; Jung, J.; Shariat, K.; Steimer, O.; Bachelier, F.; Pape, D.

    2006-01-01

    Anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) may be considered to be the gold standard for treatment of symptomatic degenerative disc disease within the cervical spine. However, fusion of the segment may result in progressive degeneration of the adjacent segments. Therefore, dynamic stabilization procedures have been introduced. Among these, artificial disc replacement by disc prosthesis seems to be promising. However, to be so, segmental motion must be preserved. This, again, is very difficult to judge and has not yet been proven. The aim of the current study was to first analyse the segmental motion following artificial disc replacement using a disc prosthesis. A second aim was to compare both segmental motion as well as clinical result to the current gold standard (ACDF). This is a prospective controlled study. Twenty-five patients with cervical disc herniation were enrolled and assigned to either study group (receiving a disc prosthesis) or control group (receiving ACDF, using a cage with bone graft and an anterior plate.) Radiostereometric analysis was used to quantify intervertebral motion immediately as well as 3, 6, 12 and 24 weeks postoperatively. Further, clinical results were judged using visual analogue scale and neuro-examination. Cervical spine segmental motion decreased over time in the presence of disc prosthesis or ACDF. However, the loss of segmental motion is significantly higher in the ACDF group, when looked at 3, 6, 12 and 24 weeks after surgery. We observed significant pain reduction in neck and arm postoperatively, without significant difference between both groups (P > 0.05). Cervical spine disc prosthesis preserves cervical spine segmental motion within the first 6 months after surgery. The clinical results are the same when compared to the early results following ACDF. PMID:17106665

  10. Artificial ribonucleases.

    PubMed

    Morrow, J R

    1994-01-01

    Many inorganic and organic compounds promote the reactions catalyzed by RNase A. Both the transesterification step, where a 2',3'-cyclic phosphate is formed with concomitant cleavage of RNA, and the hydrolysis step, where the 2',3'-cyclic phosphate is converted to a phosphate monoester, may be mimicked with compounds that are readily synthesized in the laboratory. Electrophilic activation of the phosphate ester and charge neutralization are generally important means by which artificial RNases promote phosphate diester displacement reactions. Several artificial RNases operate by a bifunctional general acid/general base mechanism, as does RNase A. Provision of an intramolecular nucleophile appears to be an important pathway for metal complex promoted phosphate diester hydrolysis. In contrast to the successful design of compounds that promote the reactions catalyzed by RNase A, there are no artificial nucleases to date that will cleave the 3' P-O bond of RNA or hydrolyze an oligonucleotide of DNA. Artificial RNases based on both metal complexes and organic compounds have been described. Metal complexes may be particularly effective catalysts for both transesterification and hydrolysis reactions of phosphate diesters. Under physiological conditions (37 degrees C and neutral pH), several metal complexes catalyze the transesterification of RNA. Future work should involve the development of metal complexes which are inert to metal ion release but which maintain open coordination sites for catalytic activity. The design of compounds containing multiple amine or imidazole groups that may demonstrate bifunctional catalysis is a promising route to new artificial RNases. Further design of these compounds and careful placement of catalytic groups may yield new RNase mimics that operate under physiological conditions. The attachment of artificial RNases to recognition agents such as oligodeoxynucleotides to create new sequence-specific endoribonucleases is an exciting field of

  11. A biohybrid artificial lung prototype with active mixing of endothelialized microporous hollow fibers.

    PubMed

    Polk, Alexa A; Maul, Timothy M; McKeel, Daniel T; Snyder, Trevor A; Lehocky, Craig A; Pitt, Bruce; Stolz, Donna Beer; Federspiel, William J; Wagner, William R

    2010-06-15

    Acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) affects nearly 150,000 patients per year in the US, and is associated with high mortality ( approximately 40%) and suboptimal options for patient care. Mechanical ventilation and extracorporeal membrane oxygenation are limited to short-term use due to ventilator-induced lung injury and poor biocompatibility, respectively. In this report, we describe the development of a biohybrid lung prototype, employing a rotating endothelialized microporous hollow fiber (MHF) bundle to improve blood biocompatibility while MHF mixing could contribute to gas transfer efficiency. MHFs were surface modified with radio frequency glow discharge (RFGD) and protein adsorption to promote endothelial cell (EC) attachment and growth. The MHF bundles were placed in the biohybrid lung prototype and rotated up to 1,500 revolutions per minute (rpm) using speed ramping protocols to condition ECs to remain adherent on the fibers. Oxygen transfer, thrombotic deposition, and EC p-selectin expression were evaluated as indicators of biohybrid lung functionality and biocompatibility. A fixed aliquot of blood in contact with MHF bundles rotated at either 250 or 750 rpm reached saturating pO(2) levels more quickly with increased rpm, supporting the concept that fiber rotation would positively contribute to oxygen transfer. The presence of ECs had no effect on the rate of oxygen transfer at lower fiber rpm, but did provide some resistance with increased rpm when the overall rate of mass transfer was higher due to active mixing. RFGD followed by fibronectin adsorption on MHFs facilitated near confluent EC coverage with minimal p-selectin expression under both normoxic and hyperoxic conditions. Indeed, even subconfluent EC coverage on MHFs significantly reduced thrombotic deposition adding further support that endothelialization enhances, blood biocompatibility. Overall these findings demonstrate a proof-of-concept that a rotating endothelialized MHF bundle

  12. Removal of 30 active pharmaceutical ingredients in surface water under long-term artificial UV irradiation.

    PubMed

    Blum, Kristin M; Norström, Sara H; Golovko, Oksana; Grabic, Roman; Järhult, Josef D; Koba, Olga; Söderström Lindström, Hanna

    2017-06-01

    This study investigated the i) kinetics, and ii) proportion of photolysis of 30 relatively stable active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) during artificial UV irradiation for 28 d in ammonium acetate buffer, filtered and unfiltered river water. Buffer was included to control removal kinetics under stable pH conditions and without particulate matter. Dark controls were used to determine removal due to other processes than photolysis and calculate the proportion of photolysis of the total removal. The removal of each API in each matrix was determined using online solid phase extraction/liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (online SPE/LC-MS/MS). Most APIs transformed during the 28 d of UV irradiation and the dark controls showed that photolysis was the major removal process for the majority of the APIs studied. The half-lives ranged from 6 h (amitriptyline) in unfiltered river water to 884 h (37 d, carbamazepine) in buffer. In unfiltered river water, the proportion of APIs with short half-lives (<48 h) was much higher (29%) than in the other matrices (4%), probably due to additional organic carbon, which could have promoted indirect photolysis. Furthermore, two APIs, memantine and fluconazole, were stable in all three matrices, while alprazolam was stable in buffer and unfiltered river water and four additional APIs were stable in buffer. Considering the relatively long-term UV-exposure, this study enabled the investigation of environmentally relevant half-lives in natural waters. Many APIs showed high persistence, which is environmentally concerning and emphasizes the importance of further studies on their environmental fate and effects. Copyright © 2017 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  13. Design of Surface-Active Artificial Enzyme Particles to Stabilize Pickering Emulsions for High-Performance Biphasic Biocatalysis.

    PubMed

    Chen, Zhaowei; Zhao, Chuanqi; Ju, Enguo; Ji, Haiwei; Ren, Jinsong; Binks, Bernard P; Qu, Xiaogang

    2016-02-24

    Surface-active artificial enzymes (SAEs) are designed and constructed by a general and novel strategy. These SAEs can simultaneously stabilize Pickering emulsions and catalyze biphasic biotransformation with superior enzymatic stability and good re-usability; for example, for the interfacial conversion of hydrophobic p-nitrophenyl butyrate into yellow water-soluble p-nitrophenolate catalyzed by esterase-mimic SAE. © 2015 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  14. Gibberellic acid, synthetic auxins, and ethylene differentially modulate alpha-L-Arabinofuranosidase activities in antisense 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylic acid synthase tomato pericarp discs.

    PubMed

    Sozzi, Gabriel O; Greve, L Carl; Prody, Gerry A; Labavitch, John M

    2002-07-01

    Alpha-L-Arabinofuranosidases (alpha-Afs) are plant enzymes capable of releasing terminal arabinofuranosyl residues from cell wall matrix polymers, as well as from different glycoconjugates. Three different alpha-Af isoforms were distinguished by size exclusion chromatography of protein extracts from control tomatoes (Lycopersicon esculentum) and an ethylene synthesis-suppressed (ESS) line expressing an antisense 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylic synthase transgene. alpha-Af I and II are active throughout fruit ontogeny. alpha-Af I is the first Zn-dependent cell wall enzyme isolated from tomato pericarp tissues, thus suggesting the involvement of zinc in fruit cell wall metabolism. This isoform is inhibited by 1,10-phenanthroline, but remains stable in the presence of NaCl and sucrose. alpha-Af II activity accounts for over 80% of the total alpha-Af activity in 10-d-old fruit, but activity drops during ripening. In contrast, alpha-Af III is ethylene dependent and specifically active during ripening. alpha-Af I released monosaccharide arabinose from KOH-soluble polysaccharides from tomato cell walls, whereas alpha-Af II and III acted on Na(2)CO(3)-soluble pectins. Different alpha-Af isoform responses to gibberellic acid, synthetic auxins, and ethylene were followed by using a novel ESS mature-green tomato pericarp disc system. alpha-Af I and II activity increased when gibberellic acid or 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid was applied, whereas ethylene treatment enhanced only alpha-Af III activity. Results suggest that tomato alpha-Afs are encoded by a gene family under differential hormonal controls, and probably have different in vivo functions. The ESS pericarp explant system allows comprehensive studies involving effects of physiological levels of different growth regulators on gene expression and enzyme activity with negligible wound-induced ethylene production.

  15. Gibberellic Acid, Synthetic Auxins, and Ethylene Differentially Modulate α-l-Arabinofuranosidase Activities in Antisense 1-Aminocyclopropane-1-Carboxylic Acid Synthase Tomato Pericarp Discs1

    PubMed Central

    Sozzi, Gabriel O.; Greve, L. Carl; Prody, Gerry A.; Labavitch, John M.

    2002-01-01

    α-l-Arabinofuranosidases (α-Afs) are plant enzymes capable of releasing terminal arabinofuranosyl residues from cell wall matrix polymers, as well as from different glycoconjugates. Three different α-Af isoforms were distinguished by size exclusion chromatography of protein extracts from control tomatoes (Lycopersicon esculentum) and an ethylene synthesis-suppressed (ESS) line expressing an antisense 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylic synthase transgene. α-Af I and II are active throughout fruit ontogeny. α-Af I is the first Zn-dependent cell wall enzyme isolated from tomato pericarp tissues, thus suggesting the involvement of zinc in fruit cell wall metabolism. This isoform is inhibited by 1,10-phenanthroline, but remains stable in the presence of NaCl and sucrose. α-Af II activity accounts for over 80% of the total α-Af activity in 10-d-old fruit, but activity drops during ripening. In contrast, α-Af III is ethylene dependent and specifically active during ripening. α-Af I released monosaccharide arabinose from KOH-soluble polysaccharides from tomato cell walls, whereas α-Af II and III acted on Na2CO3-soluble pectins. Different α-Af isoform responses to gibberellic acid, synthetic auxins, and ethylene were followed by using a novel ESS mature-green tomato pericarp disc system. α-Af I and II activity increased when gibberellic acid or 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid was applied, whereas ethylene treatment enhanced only α-Af III activity. Results suggest that tomato α-Afs are encoded by a gene family under differential hormonal controls, and probably have different in vivo functions. The ESS pericarp explant system allows comprehensive studies involving effects of physiological levels of different growth regulators on gene expression and enzyme activity with negligible wound-induced ethylene production. PMID:12114586

  16. Bryan total disc arthroplasty: a replacement disc for cervical disc disease

    PubMed Central

    Wenger, Markus; Markwalder, Thomas-Marc

    2010-01-01

    Total disc arthroplasty is a new option in the treatment of cervical degenerative disc disease. Several types of cervical disc prostheses currently challenge the gold-standard discectomy and fusion procedures. This review describes the Bryan Cervical Disc System and presents the Bryan prosthesis, its indications, surgical technique, complications, and outcomes, as given in the literature. PMID:22915917

  17. Activation of the RAGE/STAT3 Pathway in the Dorsal Root Ganglion Contributes to the Persistent Pain Hypersensitivity Induced by Lumbar Disc Herniation.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xin-Sheng; Li, Xiao; Luo, Hai-Jie; Huang, Zhu-Xi; Liu, Cui-Cui; Wan, Qing; Xu, Shu-Wei; Wu, Shao-Ling; Ke, Song-Jian; Ma, Chao

    2017-07-01

    Clinically, chronic low back pain and sciatica associated with lumbar disc herniation (LDH) is a common musculoskeletal disorder. Due to the unawareness of detailed mechanisms, it is difficult to get an effective therapy. The aim of the present study was to identify the role of the RAGE/STAT3 pathway in the dorsal root ganglion (DRG) on the formation and development of persistent pain hypersensitivity induced by LDH. Controlled animal study. University laboratory. After LDH induced by implantation of autologous nucleus pulposus (NP, harvested from animal tail) on the left L5 nerve root was established, mechanical thresholds and electrophysiological tests were conducted at relevant time points during an observation period of 28 days. Protein levels and localization of RAGE and p-STAT3 were performed by using Western blotting and immunohistochemistry, respectively. LDH induced persistent pain hypersensitivity, increased excitability of DRG neurons, and upregulated the expression of RAGE and p-STAT3 in the DRG. Consecutive injection of both RAGE antagonist FPS-ZM1 (i.t.) and STAT3 activity inhibitor S3I-201 (i.t.) inhibited the enhanced excitability of DRG neurons and mechanical allodynia induced by NP implantation. Furthermore, local knockdown of STAT3 by intrathecal injection of AAV-Cre-GFP into STAT3flox/flox mice markedly alleviated NP implantation-induced mechanical allodynia in mice. Importantly, the expression of p-STAT3 was colocalized with that of RAGE in the DRG and inhibition of RAGE with FPS-ZM1 prevented NP implantation-induced STAT3 activation. More underlying mechanism(s) of the role of the RAGE/STAT3 pathway on the formation and development of persistent pain hypersensitivity induced by LDH will be needed to be explored in future research. These findings suggest activation of the RAGE/STAT3 pathway plays a critical role in persistent pain induced by LDH, and this pathway may represent novel therapeutic targets for the treatment of LDH

  18. Forecasting geomagnetic activity indices using the Boyle index through artificial neural networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Balasubramanian, Ramkumar

    2010-11-01

    Adverse space weather conditions affect various sectors making both human lives and technologies highly susceptible. This dissertation introduces a new set of algorithms suitable for short term space weather forecasts with an enhanced lead-time and better accuracy in predicting Kp, Dst and the AE index over some leading models. Kp is a 3-hour averaged global geomagnetic activity index good for midlatitude regions. The Dst index, an hourly index calculated using four ground based magnetic field measurements near the equator, measures the energy of the Earth's ring current. The Auroral Electrojet indices or AE indices are hourly indices used to characterize the global geomagnetic activity in the auroral zone. Our algorithms can predict these indices purely from the solar wind data with lead times up to 6 hours. We have trained and tested an ANN (Artificial Neural Network) over a complete solar cycle to serve this purpose. Over the last couple of decades, ANNs have been successful for temporal prediction problems amongst other advanced non-linear techniques. Our ANN-based algorithms receive near-real-time inputs either from ACE (Advanced Composition Explorer), located at L1, and a handful of ground-based magnetometers or only from ACE. The Boyle potential, phi = 10-4 (vkm/sec)2+ 11.7BnT sin3 (theta/2) kV, or the Boyle Index (BI) is an empirically-derived formula that approximates the Earth's polar cap potential and is easily derivable in real time using the solar wind data from ACE. The logarithms of both 3-hour and 1-hour averages of the Boyle Index correlate well with the subsequent Kp, Dst and AE: Kp = 8.93 log 10 - 12.55. Dst = 0.355 - 6.48, and AE = 5.87 - 83.46. Inputs to our ANN models have greatly benefitted from the BI and its proven record as a forecasting parameter since its initiation in October, 2003. A preconditioning event tunes the magnetosphere to a specific state before an impending geomagnetic storm. The neural net not only improves the

  19. Mitotic activation of the DISC1-inducible cyclic AMP phosphodiesterase-4D9 (PDE4D9), through multi-site phosphorylation, influences cell cycle progression.

    PubMed

    Sheppard, Catherine L; Lee, Louisa C Y; Hill, Elaine V; Henderson, David J P; Anthony, Diana F; Houslay, Daniel M; Yalla, Krishna C; Cairns, Lynne S; Dunlop, Allan J; Baillie, George S; Huston, Elaine; Houslay, Miles D

    2014-09-01

    In Rat-1 cells, the dramatic decrease in the levels of both intracellular cyclic 3'5' adenosine monophosphate (cyclic AMP; cAMP) and in the activity of cAMP-activated protein kinase A (PKA) observed in mitosis was paralleled by a profound increase in cAMP hydrolyzing phosphodiesterase-4 (PDE4) activity. The decrease in PKA activity, which occurs during mitosis, was attributable to PDE4 activation as the PDE4 selective inhibitor, rolipram, but not the phosphodiesterase-3 (PDE3) inhibitor, cilostamide, specifically ablated this cell cycle-dependent effect. PDE4 inhibition caused Rat-1 cells to move from S phase into G2/M more rapidly, to transit through G2/M more quickly and to remain in G1 for a longer period. Inhibition of PDE3 elicited no observable effects on cell cycle dynamics. Selective immunopurification of each of the four PDE4 sub-families identified PDE4D as being selectively activated in mitosis. Subsequent analysis uncovered PDE4D9, an isoform whose expression can be regulated by Disrupted-In-Schizophrenia 1 (DISC1)/activating transcription factor 4 (ATF4) complex, as the sole PDE4 species activated during mitosis in Rat-1 cells. PDE4D9 becomes activated in mitosis through dual phosphorylation at Ser585 and Ser245, involving the combined action of ERK and an unidentified 'switch' kinase that has previously been shown to be activated by H2O2. Additionally, in mitosis, PDE4D9 also becomes phosphorylated at Ser67 and Ser81, through the action of MK2 (MAPKAPK2) and AMP kinase (AMPK), respectively. The multisite phosphorylation of PDE4D9 by all four of these protein kinases leads to decreased mobility (band-shift) of PDE4D9 on SDS-PAGE. PDE4D9 is predominantly concentrated in the perinuclear region of Rat-1 cells but with a fraction distributed asymmetrically at the cell margins. Our investigations demonstrate that the diminished levels of cAMP and PKA activity that characterise mitosis are due to enhanced cAMP degradation by PDE4D9. PDE4D9, was found to

  20. The origin of thick discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Comerón, Sébastien

    2015-03-01

    Thick discs are defined to be disc-like components with a scale height larger than that of the classical discs. They are ubiquitous (Yoachim & Dalcanton 2006; Comerón et al. 2011a), they are made of mostly old and metal-poor stars and are most easily detected in close to edge-on galaxies. Their origin has been considered mysterious and several formation theories have been proposed: • The thick disc being formed secularly by thin disc stars heated by disc overdensities such as giant molecular clouds or spiral arms (Villumsen 1985, ApJ, 290, 75) and by stars moved outwards from their original orbits by radial migration mechanisms (Schönrich & Binney 2009). • The thick disc being formed by the heating of the thin disc by satellites (Quinn et al. 1993) and the tidal stripping of them (Abadi et al. 2003). • The thick disc being formed fast and already thick at high redshift in an highly unstable disc. Inside that thick disc, a thin disc would form afterwards as suggested by Elemgreen & Elmegreen (2006). • The thick disc being formed originally thick at high redshift by the merger of gas-rich protogalactic fragments and a thin disc forming afterwards within it (Brook et al. 2007). The first mechanism is a secular evolution mechanism. The time-scale of the second one is dependent on the merger history of the main galaxy. In the two last mechanisms, the thick disc forms already thick in a short time-scale at high redshift. Recent Milky Way studies, (see, e.g., Bovy et al. 2012), have shown indications that there is no discontinuity between the thin and the thick disc chemical and kinematic properties. Instead, those studies indicate the presence of a monotonic distribution of disc thicknesses. This would suggest a secular origin for the Milky Way thick disc. Studies in external galaxies (Yoachim & Dalcanton 2006; Comerón et al. 2011b), have shown that low-mass disc galaxies have thick disc relative masses much larger than those found in large-mass galaxies

  1. Biomechanics of a Fixed–Center of Rotation Cervical Intervertebral Disc Prosthesis

    PubMed Central

    Crawford, Neil R.; Baek, Seungwon; Sawa, Anna G.U.; Safavi-Abbasi, Sam; Sonntag, Volker K.H.; Duggal, Neil

    2012-01-01

    Background Past in vitro experiments studying artificial discs have focused on range of motion. It is also important to understand how artificial discs affect other biomechanical parameters, especially alterations to kinematics. The purpose of this in vitro investigation was to quantify how disc replacement with a ball-and-socket disc arthroplasty device (ProDisc-C; Synthes, West Chester, Pennsylvania) alters biomechanics of the spine relative to the normal condition (positive control) and simulated fusion (negative control). Methods Specimens were tested in multiple planes by use of pure moments under load control and again in displacement control during flexion-extension with a constant 70-N compressive follower load. Optical markers measured 3-dimensional vertebral motion, and a strain gauge array measured C4-5 facet loads. Results Range of motion and lax zone after disc replacement were not significantly different from normal values except during lateral bending, whereas plating significantly reduced motion in all loading modes (P < .002). Plating but not disc replacement shifted the location of the axis of rotation anteriorly relative to the intact condition (P < 0.01). Coupled axial rotation per degree of lateral bending was 25% ± 48% greater than normal after artificial disc replacement (P = .05) but 37% ± 38% less than normal after plating (P = .002). Coupled lateral bending per degree of axial rotation was 37% ± 21% less than normal after disc replacement (P < .001) and 41% ± 36% less than normal after plating (P = .001). Facet loads did not change significantly relative to normal after anterior plating or arthroplasty, except that facet loads were decreased during flexion in both conditions (P < .03). Conclusions In all parameters studied, deviations from normal biomechanics were less substantial after artificial disc placement than after anterior plating. PMID:25694869

  2. Inhibition of cystathionine β-synthetase suppresses sodium channel activities of dorsal root ganglion neurons of rats with lumbar disc herniation

    PubMed Central

    Yan, Jun; Hu, Shufen; Zou, Kang; Xu, Min; Wang, Qianliang; Miao, Xiuhua; Yu, Shan Ping; Xu, Guang-Yin

    2016-01-01

    The pathogenesis of pain in lumbar disc herniation (LDH) remains poorly understood. We have recently demonstrated that voltage-gated sodium channels (VGSCs) in dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons were sensitized in a rat model of LDH. However, the detailed molecular mechanism for sensitization of VGSCs remains largely unknown. This study was designed to examine roles of the endogenous hydrogen sulfide synthesizing enzyme cystathionine β-synthetase (CBS) in sensitization of VGSCs in a previously validated rat model of LDH. Here we showed that inhibition of CBS activity by O-(Carboxymethyl) hydroxylamine hemihydrochloride (AOAA) significantly attenuated pain hypersensitivity in LDH rats. Administration of AOAA also reduced neuronal hyperexcitability, suppressed the sodium current density, and right-shifted the V1/2 of the inactivation curve, of hindpaw innervating DRG neurons, which is retrogradely labeled by DiI. In vitro incubation of AOAA did not alter the excitability of acutely isolated DRG neurons. Furthermore, CBS was colocalized with NaV1.7 and NaV1.8 in hindpaw-innervating DRG neurons. Treatment of AOAA markedly suppressed expression of NaV1.7 and NaV1.8 in DRGs of LDH rats. These data suggest that targeting the CBS-H2S signaling at the DRG level might represent a novel therapeutic strategy for chronic pain relief in patients with LDH. PMID:27905525

  3. Kozai-Lidov disc instability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lubow, Stephen H.; Ogilvie, Gordon I.

    2017-08-01

    Recent results by Martin et al. showed in 3D smoothed particle hydrodynamics simulations that tilted discs in binary systems can be unstable to the development of global, damped Kozai-Lidov (KL) oscillations in which the discs exchange tilt for eccentricity. We investigate the linear stability of KL modes for tilted inviscid discs under the approximations that the disc eccentricity is small and the disc remains flat. By using 1D equations, we are able to probe regimes of large ratios of outer to inner disc edge radii that are realistic for binary systems of hundreds of astronomical unit separations and are not easily probed by multidimensional simulations. For order unity binary mass ratios, KL instability is possible for a window of disc aspect ratios H/r in the outer parts of a disc that roughly scale as (nb/n)2 ≲ H/r ≲ nb/n, for binary orbital frequency nb and orbital frequency n at the disc outer edge. We present a framework for understanding the zones of instability based on the determination of branches of marginally unstable modes. In general, multiple growing eccentric KL modes can be present in a disc. Coplanar apsidal-nodal precession resonances delineate instability branches. We determine the range of tilt angles for unstable modes as a function of disc aspect ratio. Unlike the KL instability for free particles that involves a critical (minimum) tilt angle, disc instability is possible for any non-zero tilt angle depending on the disc aspect ratio.

  4. The Galactic stellar disc

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Feltzing, S.; Bensby, T.

    2008-12-01

    The study of the Milky Way stellar discs in the context of galaxy formation is discussed. In particular, we explore the properties of the Milky Way disc using a new sample of about 550 dwarf stars for which we have recently obtained elemental abundances and ages based on high-resolution spectroscopy. For all the stars we also have full kinematic information as well as information about their stellar orbits. We confirm results from previous studies that the thin and the thick discs have distinct abundance patterns. But we also explore a larger range of orbital parameters than what has been possible in our previous studies. Several new results are presented. We find that stars that reach high above the Galactic plane and have eccentric orbits show remarkably tight abundance trends. This implies that these stars formed out of well-mixed gas that had been homogenized over large volumes. We find some evidence that suggest that the event that most likely caused the heating of this stellar population happened a few billion years ago. Through a simple, kinematic exploration of stars with super-solar [Fe/H], we show that the solar neighbourhood contains metal-rich, high velocity stars that are very likely associated with the thick disc. Additionally, the HR1614 moving group and the Hercules and Arcturus stellar streams are discussed and it is concluded that, probably, a large fraction of the groups and streams so far identified in the disc are the result of evolution and interactions within the stellar disc rather than being dissolved stellar clusters or engulfed dwarf galaxies. This paper includes data gathered with the 6.5 m Magellan Telescopes located at Las Campanas Observatory, Chile. Also based on observations collected at the Nordic Optical Telescope on La Palma, Spain, and at the European Southern Observatories on La Silla and Paranal, Chile, Proposals no. 65.L-0019(B), 67.B-0108(B), 69.B-0277.

  5. Automated segmentation of optic disc region on retinal fundus photographs: Comparison of contour modeling and pixel classification methods.

    PubMed

    Muramatsu, Chisako; Nakagawa, Toshiaki; Sawada, Akira; Hatanaka, Yuji; Hara, Takeshi; Yamamoto, Tetsuya; Fujita, Hiroshi

    2011-01-01

    The automatic determination of the optic disc area in retinal fundus images can be useful for calculation of the cup-to-disc (CD) ratio in the glaucoma screening. We compared three different methods that employed active contour model (ACM), fuzzy c-mean (FCM) clustering, and artificial neural network (ANN) for the segmentation of the optic disc regions. The results of these methods were evaluated using new databases that included the images captured by different camera systems. The average measures of overlap between the disc regions determined by an ophthalmologist and by using the ACM (0.88 and 0.87 for two test datasets) and ANN (0.88 and 0.89) methods were slightly higher than that by using FCM (0.86 and 0.86) method. These results on the unknown datasets were comparable with those of the resubstitution test; this indicates the generalizability of these methods. The differences in the vertical diameters, which are often used for CD ratio calculation, determined by the proposed methods and based on the ophthalmologist's outlines were even smaller than those in the case of the measure of overlap. The proposed methods can be useful for automatic determination of CD ratios.

  6. Restricted patterning of vestigial expression in Drosophila wing imaginal discs requires synergistic activation by both Mad and the drifter POU domain transcription factor.

    PubMed

    Certel, K; Hudson, A; Carroll, S B; Johnson, W A

    2000-07-01

    The Drosophila Vestigial protein has been shown to play an essential role in the regulation of cell proliferation and differentiation within the developing wing imaginal disc. Cell-specific expression of vg is controlled by two separate transcriptional enhancers. The boundary enhancer controls expression in cells near the dorsoventral (DV) boundary and is regulated by the Notch signal transduction pathway, while the quadrant enhancer responds to the Decapentaplegic and Wingless morphogen gradients emanating from cells near the anteroposterior (AP) and DV boundaries, respectively. MAD-dependent activation of the vestigial quadrant enhancer results in broad expression throughout the wing pouch but is excluded from cells near the DV boundary. This has previously been thought to be due to direct repression by a signal from the DV boundary; however, we show that this exclusion of quadrant enhancer-dependent expression from the DV boundary is due to the absence of an additional essential activator in those cells. The Drosophila POU domain transcriptional regulator, Drifter, is expressed in all cells within the wing pouch expressing a vgQ-lacZ transgene and is also excluded from the DV boundary. Viable drifter hypomorphic mutations cause defects in cell proliferation and wing vein patterning correlated with decreased quadrant enhancer-dependent expression. Drifter misexpression at the DV boundary using the GAL4/UAS system causes ectopic outgrowths at the distal wing tip due to induction of aberrant Vestigial expression, while a dominant-negative Drifter isoform represses expression of vgQ-lacZ and causes severe notching of the adult wing. In addition, we have identified an essential evolutionarily conserved sequence element bound by the Drifter protein with high affinity and located adjacent to the MAD binding site within the quadrant enhancer. Our results demonstrate that Drifter functions along with MAD as a direct activator of Vestigial expression in the wing pouch.

  7. The effect of low back pain on the daily activities of patients with lumbar disc herniation: a Turkish military hospital experience.

    PubMed

    Kose, Gulsah; Hatipoglu, Sevgi

    2012-04-01

    This study was performed to assess disability on daily living activities, which developed secondary to low back pain, in patients with lumbar disc herniation and treated either conservatively or surgically. The study was performed between November 2008 and June 2009. Visual analogue scale (VAS) was used to measure the intensity of pain, and the Oswestry Disability Index (ODI) was used to assess the disability of the patients on daily living activities. Of the 112 patients, 55 were women and 57 were men. The mean age was 39.68 years for the conservative treatment group and 46.46 years the for surgical treatment group. In the pretreatment period, the patients who were selected for surgical treatment had higher VAS score and ODI than did the patients who were selected for conservative treatment. The disability areas that were reported in the pretreatment period were walking, sleeping, standing, and traveling for the surgical treatment group and self-care, sitting, and social life areas for the conservative treatment group. When the ODI and VAS score of the patients were statistically compared at the third month of posttreatment period, the scores were significantly low in the surgical treatment group. The disability areas that were reported at the third month of posttreatment period were weight lifting, self-care, and walking for the surgical treatment group and social life, sleeping, sitting, and standing for the conservative treatment group. This study found that patients with low back pain experience physical disabilities due to pain. Their daily living activities are affected by these disabilities and the intensity of pain affects the level of disability. Knowledge of the disability areas caused by low back pain plays an important role in the determination of nursing care and content of the education which will be offered to the patients. The use of scale on the patient's care is important to form a common language in nursing and to obtain evidence-based data

  8. Comparisons and connections between mean field dynamo theory and accretion disc theory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blackman, E. G.

    2010-01-01

    The origin of large scale magnetic fields in astrophysical rotators, and the conversion of gravitational energy into radiation near stars and compact objects via accretion have been subjects of active research for a half century. Magnetohydrodynamic turbulence makes both problems highly nonlinear, so both subjects have benefitted from numerical simulations.However, understanding the key principles and practical modeling of observations warrants testable semi-analytic mean field theories that distill the essential physics. Mean field dynamo (MFD) theory and alpha-viscosity accretion disc theory exemplify this pursuit. That the latter is a mean field theory is not always made explicit but the combination of turbulence and global symmetry imply such. The more commonly explicit presentation of assumptions in 20th century textbook MFDT has exposed it to arguably more widespread criticism than incurred by 20th century alpha-accretion theory despite complementary weaknesses. In the 21st century however, MFDT has experienced a breakthrough with a dynamical saturation theory that consistently agrees with simulations. Such has not yet occurred in accretion disc theory, though progress is emerging. Ironically however, for accretion engines, MFDT and accretion theory are presently two artificially uncoupled pieces of what should be a single coupled theory. Large scale fields and accretion flows are dynamically intertwined because large scale fields likely play a key role in angular momentum transport. I discuss and synthesize aspects of recent progress in MFDT and accretion disc theory to suggest why the two likely conspire in a unified theory.

  9. Artificial Intelligence.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Waltz, David L.

    1982-01-01

    Describes kinds of results achieved by computer programs in artificial intelligence. Topics discussed include heuristic searches, artificial intelligence/psychology, planning program, backward chaining, learning (focusing on Winograd's blocks to explore learning strategies), concept learning, constraint propagation, language understanding…

  10. Product and process for manufacturing an optical disc master

    SciTech Connect

    Dobbin, R.B.; Loeppky, D.G.; Norton, J.R.; Del Mar, B.E.

    1994-01-11

    The invention discloses a simplified four step process for making an optical disc master or alternatively a WORM disc by first making or obtaining a transparent polymer disc with a tracking groove of desired geometry molded therein, then spin coating an optically active lamina on the grooved side of the disc, then recording data on said polymer disc with groove controlled and tracked laser means by ablating active lamina, forming pits, the shape of which is determined by the groove geometry and finally depositing a conductive and reflective lamina over the pitted active lamina. To change the OD master to an OD WORM, a protective cover is added to the electrically conductive and optically reflective lamina. 12 figs.

  11. The Effect of Different microRNA Backbones on Artificial miRNA Expression and Knockdown Activity Against HIV-1 Replication.

    PubMed

    Nejati, Ahmad; Soleimani, Masoud; Arefian, Ehsan; Marashi, Sayed M; Tabatabaie, Hamideh; Farahmand, Mohammad; Shoja, Zabihollah; Mahmoodi, Mahmood; Nategh, Rakhshandeh; Shahmahmoodi, Shohreh

    2016-01-01

    Artificial microRNAs (miRNAs) are designed to develop an RNAi-based gene therapy. Recently, it has been suggested that the flanking sequences and terminal loop structure play a critical role in RNAi biogenesis and target recognition, but no extensive study regarding the different miRNA backbone for artificial miRNAs optimization has been conducted. We tested three artificial miRNAs with human hsa-miR30a (common miRNA), hsa-miR150 (T cell specific miRNA), and hsa-miR122 (liver specific miRNA) backbones in HEK-293T and Jurkat cell lines. Artificial miRNA processing and knockdown efficiency were analyzed by stem-loop RT-PCR, qRT-PCR, luciferase assay and target challenging. We identified strikingly different RNAi activities among these different artificial miRNAs. Our results demonstrated that expression and function of art-miR150 was more than art-miR30 and artmiR122 in both HEK-293T and Jurkat cell lines. Since the main difference in these artificial miRNAs was flanking sequences and terminal loop structure, the change between the expression and function of artificial miRNAs can be attributed to these structures. This study showed that expression of cell-specific artificial miRNA in target and nontarget cells is not different, but variation in flanking sequences and terminal loop can be involved in expression and function of artificial miRNAs. These results can be important for improving artificial miRNA design in RNAi-based gene therapy.

  12. Revival of the Jumping Disc

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ucke, C.; Schlichting, H-J.

    2009-01-01

    Snap discs made of bimetal have many technical applications as thermostats. Jumping discs are a toy version of such snap discs. Besides giving technical information, we describe physical investigations. We show especially how, through simple measurements and calculations, you can determine the initial speed ([approximately equal to]3.5 m…

  13. The Chemistry of Optical Discs.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Birkett, David

    2002-01-01

    Explains the chemistry used in compact discs (CD), digital versatile discs (DVD), and magneto-optical (MO) discs focusing on the steps of initial creation of the mold, the molding of the polycarbonate, the deposition of the reflective layers, the lacquering of the CDs, and the bonding of DVDs. (Contains 15 references.) (YDS)

  14. Revival of the Jumping Disc

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ucke, C.; Schlichting, H-J.

    2009-01-01

    Snap discs made of bimetal have many technical applications as thermostats. Jumping discs are a toy version of such snap discs. Besides giving technical information, we describe physical investigations. We show especially how, through simple measurements and calculations, you can determine the initial speed ([approximately equal to]3.5 m…

  15. How do accretion discs break?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dogan, Suzan

    2016-07-01

    Accretion discs are common in binary systems, and they are often found to be misaligned with respect to the binary orbit. The gravitational torque from a companion induces nodal precession in misaligned disc orbits. In this study, we first calculate whether this precession is strong enough to overcome the internal disc torques communicating angular momentum. We compare the disc precession torque with the disc viscous torque to determine whether the disc should warp or break. For typical parameters precession wins: the disc breaks into distinct planes that precess effectively independently. To check our analytical findings, we perform 3D hydrodynamical numerical simulations using the PHANTOM smoothed particle hydrodynamics code, and confirm that disc breaking is widespread and enhances accretion on to the central object. For some inclinations, the disc goes through strong Kozai cycles. Disc breaking promotes markedly enhanced and variable accretion and potentially produces high-energy particles or radiation through shocks. This would have significant implications for all binary systems: e.g. accretion outbursts in X-ray binaries and fuelling supermassive black hole (SMBH) binaries. The behaviour we have discussed in this work is relevant to a variety of astrophysical systems, for example X-ray binaries, where the disc plane may be tilted by radiation warping, SMBH binaries, where accretion of misaligned gas can create effectively random inclinations and protostellar binaries, where a disc may be misaligned by a variety of effects such as binary capture/exchange, accretion after binary formation.

  16. Artificial Intelligence.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Information Technology Quarterly, 1985

    1985-01-01

    This issue of "Information Technology Quarterly" is devoted to the theme of "Artificial Intelligence." It contains two major articles: (1) Artificial Intelligence and Law" (D. Peter O'Neill and George D. Wood); (2) "Artificial Intelligence: A Long and Winding Road" (John J. Simon, Jr.). In addition, it contains two sidebars: (1) "Calculating and…

  17. Artificial Intelligence.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Information Technology Quarterly, 1985

    1985-01-01

    This issue of "Information Technology Quarterly" is devoted to the theme of "Artificial Intelligence." It contains two major articles: (1) Artificial Intelligence and Law" (D. Peter O'Neill and George D. Wood); (2) "Artificial Intelligence: A Long and Winding Road" (John J. Simon, Jr.). In addition, it contains two sidebars: (1) "Calculating and…

  18. The DISC Quotient

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Elliott, John R.; Baxter, Stephen

    2012-09-01

    D.I.S.C: Decipherment Impact of a Signal's Content. The authors present a numerical method to characterise the significance of the receipt of a complex and potentially decipherable signal from extraterrestrial intelligence (ETI). The purpose of the scale is to facilitate the public communication of work on any such claimed signal, as such work proceeds, and to assist in its discussion and interpretation. Building on a "position" paper rationale, this paper looks at the DISC quotient proposed and develops the algorithmic steps and comprising measures that form this post detection strategy for information dissemination, based on prior work on message detection, decipherment. As argued, we require a robust and incremental strategy, to disseminate timely, accurate and meaningful information, to the scientific community and the general public, in the event we receive an "alien" signal that displays decipherable information. This post-detection strategy is to serve as a stepwise algorithm for a logical approach to information extraction and a vehicle for sequential information dissemination, to manage societal impact. The "DISC Quotient", which is based on signal analysis processing stages, includes factors based on the signal's data quantity, structure, affinity to known human languages, and likely decipherment times. Comparisons with human and other phenomena are included as a guide to assessing likely societal impact. It is submitted that the development, refinement and implementation of DISC as an integral strategy, during the complex processes involved in post detection and decipherment, is essential if we wish to minimize disruption and optimize dissemination.

  19. Herniated Lumbar Disc

    MedlinePlus

    ... at and just below the waist. A herniated lumbar disc can press on the nerves in the spine and may cause pain, numbness, ... point injections do not help heal a herniated lumbar ... on and irritating the nerves, causing symptoms of pain and weakness. The most ...

  20. The Teddy Bears' Disc.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Laurillard, Diana

    1985-01-01

    Reports an evaluation of the Teddy Bear disc, an interactive videodisc developed at the Open University for a second-level course in metallurgy and materials technology. Findings from observation of students utilizing the videodisc are reviewed; successful design features and design problems are considered; and development costs are outlined. (MBR)

  1. Hybrid cervical disc arthroplasty.

    PubMed

    Tu, Tsung-Hsi; Wu, Jau-Ching; Cheng, Henrich; Mummaneni, Praveen V

    2017-01-01

    For patients with multilevel cervical stenosis at nonadjacent segments, one of the traditional approaches has included a multilevel fusion of the abnormal segments as well as the intervening normal segment. In this video we demonstrate an alternative treatment plan with tailored use of a combination of anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) and cervical disc arthroplasty (CDA) with an intervening skipped level. The authors present the case of a 72-year-old woman with myeloradiculopathy and a large disc herniation with facet joint degeneration at C3-4 and bulging disc at C5-6. After nonoperative treatment failed, she underwent a single-level ACDF at C3-4 and single-level arthroplasty at C5-6, which successfully relieved her symptoms. No intervention was performed at the normal intervening C4-5 segment. By using ACDF combined with arthroplasty, the authors have avoided a 3-level fusion for this patient and maintained the range of motion of 2 disc levels. The video can be found here: https://youtu.be/OrxcPUBvqLk .

  2. The Teddy Bears' Disc.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Laurillard, Diana

    1985-01-01

    Reports an evaluation of the Teddy Bear disc, an interactive videodisc developed at the Open University for a second-level course in metallurgy and materials technology. Findings from observation of students utilizing the videodisc are reviewed; successful design features and design problems are considered; and development costs are outlined. (MBR)

  3. Motion Path of the Instant Center of Rotation in the Cervical Spine During In Vivo Dynamic Flexion-Extension: Implications for Artificial Disc Design and Evaluation of Motion Quality Following Arthrodesis

    PubMed Central

    Anderst, William; Baillargeon, Emma; Donaldson, William; Lee, Joon; Kang, James

    2013-01-01

    Study Design Case-control. Objective To characterize the motion path of the instant center of rotation (ICR) at each cervical motion segment from C2 to C7 during dynamic flexion-extension in asymptomatic subjects. To compare asymptomatic and single-level arthrodesis patient ICR paths. Summary of Background Data The ICR has been proposed as an alternative to range of motion (ROM) for evaluating the quality of spine movement and for identifying abnormal midrange kinematics. The motion path of the ICR during dynamic motion has not been reported. Methods 20 asymptomatic controls, 12 C5/C6 and 5 C6/C7 arthrodesis patients performed full ROM flexion-extension while biplane radiographs were collected at 30 Hz. A previously validated tracking process determined three-dimensional vertebral position with sub-millimeter accuracy. The finite helical axis method was used to calculate the ICR between adjacent vertebrae. A linear mixed-model analysis identified differences in the ICR path among motion segments and between controls and arthrodesis patients. Results From C2/C3 to C6/C7, the mean ICR location moved superior for each successive motion segment (p < .001). The AP change in ICR location per degree of flexion-extension decreased from the C2/C3 motion segment to the C6/C7 motion segment (p < .001). Asymptomatic subject variability (95% CI) in the ICR location averaged ±1.2 mm in the SI direction and ±1.9 mm in the AP direction over all motion segments and flexion-extension angles. Asymptomatic and arthrodesis groups were not significantly different in terms of average ICR position (all p ≥ .091) or in terms of the change in ICR location per degree of flexion-extension (all p ≥ .249). Conclusions To replicate asymptomatic in vivo cervical motion, disc replacements should account for level-specific differences in the location and motion path of ICR. Single-level anterior arthrodesis does not appear to affect cervical motion quality during flexion-extension. PMID

  4. Artificial Chemical Reporter Targeting Strategy Using Bioorthogonal Click Reaction for Improving Active-Targeting Efficiency of Tumor.

    PubMed

    Yoon, Hong Yeol; Shin, Min Lee; Shim, Man Kyu; Lee, Sangmin; Na, Jin Hee; Koo, Heebeom; Lee, Hyukjin; Kim, Jong-Ho; Lee, Kuen Yong; Kim, Kwangmeyung; Kwon, Ick Chan

    2017-05-01

    Biological ligands such as aptamer, antibody, glucose, and peptide have been widely used to bind specific surface molecules or receptors in tumor cells or subcellular structures to improve tumor-targeting efficiency of nanoparticles. However, this active-targeting strategy has limitations for tumor targeting due to inter- and intraheterogeneity of tumors. In this study, we demonstrated an alternative active-targeting strategy using metabolic engineering and bioorthogonal click reaction to improve tumor-targeting efficiency of nanoparticles. We observed that azide-containing chemical reporters were successfully generated onto surface glycans of various tumor cells such as lung cancer (A549), brain cancer (U87), and breast cancer (BT-474, MDA-MB231, MCF-7) via metabolic engineering in vitro. In addition, we compared tumor targeting of artificial azide reporter with bicyclononyne (BCN)-conjugated glycol chitosan nanoparticles (BCN-CNPs) and integrin αvβ3 with cyclic RGD-conjugated CNPs (cRGD-CNPs) in vitro and in vivo. Fluorescence intensity of azide-reporter-targeted BCN-CNPs in tumor tissues was 1.6-fold higher and with a more uniform distribution compared to that of cRGD-CNPs. Moreover, even in the isolated heterogeneous U87 cells, BCN-CNPs could bind artificial azide reporters on tumor cells more uniformly (∼92.9%) compared to cRGD-CNPs. Therefore, the artificial azide-reporter-targeting strategy can be utilized for targeting heterogeneous tumor cells via bioorthogonal click reaction and may provide an alternative method of tumor targeting for further investigation in cancer therapy.

  5. Electromagnetic versus Lense-Thirring alignment of black hole accretion discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Polko, Peter; McKinney, Jonathan C.

    2017-01-01

    Accretion discs and black holes (BHs) have angular momenta that are generally misaligned, which can lead to warped discs and bends in any jets produced. We examine whether a disc that is misaligned at large radii can be aligned more efficiently by the torque of a Blandford-Znajek (BZ) jet than by Lense-Thirring (LT) precession. To obtain a strong result, we will assume that these torques maximally align the disc, rather than cause precession, or disc tearing. We consider several disc states that include radiatively inefficient thick discs, radiatively efficient thin discs, and super-Eddington accretion discs. The magnetic field strength of the BZ jet is chosen as either from standard equipartition arguments or from magnetically arrested disc (MAD) simulations. We show that standard thin accretion discs can reach spin-disc alignment out to large radii long before LT would play a role, due to the slow infall time that gives even a weak BZ jet time to align the disc. We show that geometrically thick radiatively inefficient discs and super-Eddington discs in the MAD state reach spin-disc alignment near the BH when density profiles are shallow as in magnetohydrodynamical simulations, while the BZ jet aligns discs with steep density profiles (as in advection-dominated accretion flows) out to larger radii. Our results imply that the BZ jet torque should affect the cosmological evolution of BH spin magnitude and direction, spin measurements in active galactic nuclei and X-ray binaries, and the interpretations for Event Horizon Telescope observations of discs or jets in strong-field gravity regimes.

  6. Which design and biomaterial factors affect clinical wear performance of total disc replacements? A systematic review.

    PubMed

    Veruva, Sai Y; Steinbeck, Marla J; Toth, Jeffrey; Alexander, Dominik D; Kurtz, Steven M

    2014-12-01

    Total disc replacement was clinically introduced to reduce pain and preserve segmental motion of the lumbar and cervical spine. Previous case studies have reported on the wear and adverse local tissue reactions around artificial prostheses, but it is unclear how design and biomaterials affect clinical outcomes. Which design and material factors are associated with differences in clinical wear performance (implant wear and periprosthetic tissue response) of (1) lumbar and (2) cervical total disc replacements? We performed a systematic review on the topics of implant wear and periprosthetic tissue response using an advanced search in MEDLINE and Scopus electronic databases. Of the 340 references identified, 33 were retrieved for full-text evaluation, from which 16 papers met the inclusion criteria (12 on lumbar disc replacement and five on cervical disc replacement; one of the included studies reported on both lumbar and cervical disc replacement), which involved semiquantitative analysis of wear and adverse local tissue reactions along with a description of the device used. An additional three papers were located by searching bibliographies of key articles. There were seven case reports, three case series, two case-control studies, and seven analytical studies. The Methodological Index for Non-randomized Studies (MINORS) Scale was used to score case series and case-control studies, which yielded mean scores of 10.3 of 16 and 17.5 of 24, respectively. In general, the case series (three) and case-control (two) studies were of good quality. In lumbar regions, metal-on-polymer devices with mobile-bearing designs consistently generated small and large polymeric wear debris, triggering periprosthetic tissue activation of macrophages and giant cells, respectively. In the cervical regions, metal-on-polymer devices with fixed-bearing designs had similar outcomes. All metal-on-metal constructs tended to generate small metallic wear debris, which typically triggered an

  7. Stimulation of reproductive activity in anovulatory Alpine goats exposed to bucks treated only with artificially long days.

    PubMed

    Delgadillo, J A; Vélez, L I

    2010-12-01

    Two experiments were conducted in a subtropical latitude to determine the response of Alpine male goats to a treatment with artificially long days (experiment 1), and the response of anovulatory lactating Alpine does exposed to males treated only with artificially long days (experiment 2). In experiment 1, one group of males was kept under natural photoperiod (n = 4) while another was exposed to 2.5 months of artificially long days (16 h of light/day) from 1 December (n = 4). Plasma testosterone concentrations were determined weekly. Intensity of odor of males was determined every 2 weeks. Sexual behavior of bucks was observed during 3 days about 90 days after the end of the long day treatment. A treatment-by-time interaction was detected for testosterone secretion (P < 0.001). In control males, low plasma concentrations of testosterone were observed from March to June. In contrast, in long-day treated males, high levels of testosterone were observed from March to June (P < 0.05). A treatment-by-time interaction was detected for the intensity of male odor (P < 0.01). The male odor was stronger in long-day treated bucks than in untreated ones from March to June (P < 0.05). The number of ano-genital sniffing, nudging and flehmen was greater in long-day treated males than in untreated ones when exposed to anestrous does (P < 0.05). In experiment 2, one group of males was left under natural photoperiod variations (n = 5) and the other (n = 5) was submitted to the same photoperiodic treatment described in experiment 1. On 3 May, three untreated and three long-day treated males were put in contact with anestrous Alpine does left under natural photoperiod. Fertility was higher in does exposed to light-treated males (36/45, 80%) than those in contact with untreated ones (3/45, 7%; P < 0.05). Prolificacy was similar (P > 0.05) in does exposed to treated (1.8 ± 0.1) and untreated males (1.7 ± 0.3). These results indicate that the sexual activity of Alpine male goats raised

  8. 26 CFR 1.6011-2 - Returns, etc., of DISC's and former DISC's.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-04-01

    ... 26 Internal Revenue 13 2011-04-01 2011-04-01 false Returns, etc., of DISC's and former DISC's. 1...., of DISC's and former DISC's. (a) Records and information. Every DISC and former DISC (as defined in..., statements, and special returns. Thus, for example, a DISC is required to maintain the books of account or...

  9. Gentamicin in vitro activity and tentative gentamicin interpretation criteria for the CLSI and calibrated dichotomous sensitivity disc diffusion methods for Neisseria gonorrhoeae.

    PubMed

    Bala, Manju; Singh, Vikram; Philipova, Ivva; Bhargava, Aradhana; Chandra Joshi, Naveen; Unemo, Magnus

    2016-07-01

    XDR Neisseria gonorrhoeae imposes the threat of untreatable gonorrhoea. Gentamicin is considered for future treatment; however, no interpretation criteria for the CLSI and calibrated dichotomous sensitivity (CDS) disc diffusion (DD) techniques are available for N. gonorrhoeae. We investigated the in vitro gentamicin activity by MIC and DD methods, proposed DD breakpoints and determined DD ranges for 10 international quality control (QC) strains. Gentamicin susceptibility of 333 N. gonorrhoeae isolates, including 323 clinical isolates and 10 QC strains, was determined. MIC determination (Etest) and DD methods (CLSI and CDS) were performed. The relationship between MIC, inhibition zone diameter and annular radius was determined by linear regression analysis and the correlation coefficient (r) was calculated. Gentamicin MICs for the QC strains were within published ranges. Of the 323 clinical isolates, according to published breakpoints 75.9%, 23.5% and 0.6% were susceptible, intermediately susceptible and resistant, respectively. Based on error minimization with MICs of ≤4, 8-16 and ≥32 mg/L, breakpoints proposed are susceptible ≥16 mm, intermediately susceptible 13-15 mm and resistant ≤12 mm for the CLSI method and susceptible ≥6 mm, less susceptible 3-5 mm and resistant ≤2 mm for the CDS technique. Low resistance to gentamicin was identified and gentamicin might be a future treatment option for gonorrhoea. Tentative gentamicin zone breakpoints were defined for two DD methods and QC ranges for 10 international reference strains were established. Our findings suggest that in resource-poor settings where MIC testing is not a feasible option, the DD methods can be used to indicate gentamicin resistance. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  10. Role of Cytokines in Intervertebral Disc Degeneration: Pain and Disc-content

    PubMed Central

    Risbud, Makarand V.; Shapiro, Irving. M

    2014-01-01

    Degeneration of the intervertebral disc is the major contributor to back/neck and radicular pain. It is characterized by an elevation in levels of the inflammatory cytokines tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α, interleukin (IL)-1 α/β, IL-6 and IL-17 secreted by the disc cells themselves; these cytokines promote matrix degradation, chemokine production and changes in cell phenotype. The resulting imbalance between catabolic and anabolic responses leads to degeneration, as well as herniation and radicular pain. Release of chemokines from degenerating discs promote infiltration and activation of T and B cells, macrophages, neutrophils, and mast cells further amplifying the inflammatory cascade. Immunocyte migration into the disc is accompanied by the appearance of microvasculature and nerve fibers arising from the dorsal root ganglion (DRG). In this inflammatory milieu, neurogenic factors in particular nerve growth factor (NGF) and brain-derive neurotrophic factor (BDNF) generated by disc and immune cells induce expression of pain associated cation channels in DRGs. Depolarization of these channels is likely to promote discogenic and radicular pain and reinforce the cytokine-mediated degenerative cascade. Taken together, the enhanced understanding of the contribution of cytokines and immune cells to catabolic and nociceptive processes provide new targets for treating symptomatic disc disease. PMID:24166242

  11. Sweet taste receptor expression in ruminant intestine and its activation by artificial sweeteners to regulate glucose absorption.

    PubMed

    Moran, A W; Al-Rammahi, M; Zhang, C; Bravo, D; Calsamiglia, S; Shirazi-Beechey, S P

    2014-01-01

    Absorption of glucose from the lumen of the intestine into enterocytes is accomplished by sodium-glucose co-transporter 1 (SGLT1). In the majority of mammalian species, expression (this includes activity) of SGLT1 is upregulated in response to increased dietary monosaccharides. This regulatory pathway is initiated by sensing of luminal sugar by the gut-expressed sweet taste receptor. The objectives of our studies were to determine (1) if the ruminant intestine expresses the sweet taste receptor, which consists of two subunits [taste 1 receptor 2 (T1R2) and 3 (T1R3)], and other key signaling molecules required for SGLT1 upregulation in nonruminant intestines, and (2) whether T1R2-T1R3 sensing of artificial sweeteners induces release of glucagon-like peptide-2 (GLP-2) and enhances SGLT1 expression. We found that the small intestine of sheep and cattle express T1R2, T1R3, G-protein gustducin, and GLP-2 in enteroendocrine L-cells. Maintaining 110-d-old ruminating calves for 60d on a diet containing a starter concentrate and the artificial sweetener Sucram (consisting of saccharin and neohesperidin dihydrochalcone; Pancosma SA, Geneva, Switzerland) enhances (1) Na(+)-dependent d-glucose uptake by over 3-fold, (2) villus height and crypt depth by 1.4- and 1.2-fold, and (3) maltase- and alkaline phosphatase-specific activity by 1.5-fold compared to calves maintained on the same diet without Sucram. No statistically significant differences were observed for rates of intestinal glucose uptake, villus height, crypt depth, or enzyme activities between 50-d-old milk-fed calves and calves maintained on the same diet containing Sucram. When adult cows were kept on a diet containing 80:20 ryegrass hay-to-concentrate supplemented with Sucram, more than a 7-fold increase in SGLT1 protein abundance was noted. Collectively, the data indicate that inclusion of this artificial sweetener enhances SGLT1 expression and mucosal growth in ruminant animals. Exposure of ruminant sheep

  12. AIRS Data Products at GES DISC DAAC

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2003-01-01

    This list contains the names and some characteristics of Atmospheric InfraRed Sounder (AIRS) data products at the Goddard Earth Sciences (GES) Data and Information Services Center (DISC) Distributed Active Archive Center (DAAC). The list includes variables, units, dimensions, and descriptions for each of the data products, which include infrared radiances and brightness temperatures.

  13. Project DISC: Developing Indian Software Curriculum.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jacobi, Carolyn

    Project DISC (Developing Indian Software Curriculum) was initiated in the Rapid City (South Dakota) school district to improve Native American children's reading and language arts ability and to provide them with microcomputer skills. During the summer of 1982, introductory computer activities were planned, a computer specialist was hired, and…

  14. The effect of two artificial salivas on the adhesion of Candida albicans to heat-polymerized acrylic resin

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    PURPOSE Xerostomia can diminish the quality of life, leads to changes in normal chemical composition of saliva and oral microbiata, and increases the risk for opportunistic infections, such as Candida albicans. Various artificial salivas have been considered for patients with xerostomia. However, the knowledge on the antifungal and antiadhesive activity of artificial saliva substitutes is limited. The aim of the present study was to evaluate influence of two artificial salivas on the adhesion of Candida albicans to the polymethylmethacrylate disc specimens. MATERIALS AND METHODS Two commercial artificial salivas (Saliva Orthana and Biotene Oral Balance Gel) were selected. 45 polymethylmethacrylate disc specimens were prepared and randomly allocated into 3 groups; Saliva Orthana, Biotene-Oral Balance gel and distilled water. Specimens were stored in the artificial saliva or in the sterile distilled water for 60 minutes at 37℃. Then they were exposed to yeast suspensions including Candida albicans. Yeast cells were counted using ×40 magnification under a light microscope and data were analysed. RESULTS Analysis of data indicated statistically significant difference in adhesion of Candida albicans among all experimental groups (P=.000). Findings indicated that Saliva Orthana had higher adhesion scores than the Biotene Oral Balance gel and distilled water (P<.05). CONCLUSION In comparison of Saliva Orthana, the use of Biotene Oral Balance Gel including lysozyme, lactoferrin and peroxidase may be an appropriate treatment method to prevent of adhesion of Candida albicans and related infections in patients with xerostomia. PMID:25932306

  15. Artificial phosphorylation sites modulate the activity of a voltage-gated potassium channel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ariyaratne, Amila; Zocchi, Giovanni

    2015-03-01

    The KvAP potassium channel is representative of a family of voltage-gated ion channels where the membrane potential is sensed by a transmembrane helix containing several positively charged arginines. Previous work by Wang and Zocchi [A. Wang and G. Zocchi, PLoS ONE 6, e18598 (2011), 10.1371/journal.pone.0018598] showed how a negatively charged polyelectrolyte attached in proximity to the voltage sensing element can bias the opening probability of the channel. Here we introduce three phosphorylation sites at the same location and show that the response curve of the channel shifts by about 20 mV upon phosphorylation, while other characteristics such as the single-channel conductance are unaffected. In summary, we construct an artificial phosphorylation site which confers allosteric regulation to the channel.

  16. Artificial rheotaxis.

    PubMed

    Palacci, Jérémie; Sacanna, Stefano; Abramian, Anaïs; Barral, Jérémie; Hanson, Kasey; Grosberg, Alexander Y; Pine, David J; Chaikin, Paul M

    2015-05-01

    Motility is a basic feature of living microorganisms, and how it works is often determined by environmental cues. Recent efforts have focused on developing artificial systems that can mimic microorganisms, in particular their self-propulsion. We report on the design and characterization of synthetic self-propelled particles that migrate upstream, known as positive rheotaxis. This phenomenon results from a purely physical mechanism involving the interplay between the polarity of the particles and their alignment by a viscous torque. We show quantitative agreement between experimental data and a simple model of an overdamped Brownian pendulum. The model notably predicts the existence of a stagnation point in a diverging flow. We take advantage of this property to demonstrate that our active particles can sense and predictably organize in an imposed flow. Our colloidal system represents an important step toward the realization of biomimetic microsystems with the ability to sense and respond to environmental changes.

  17. Artificial Hydrogenases

    PubMed Central

    Barton, Bryan E.; Olsen, Matthew T.; Rauchfuss, Thomas B.

    2010-01-01

    Decades of biophysical study on the hydrogenase (H2ase) enzymes have yielded sufficient information to guide the synthesis of analogues of their active sites. Three families of enzymes serve as inspiration for this work: the [FeFe]-, [NiFe]-, and [Fe]-H2ases, all of which feature iron centers bound to both CO and thiolate. Artificial H2ases effect the oxidation of H2 of H2 and the reverse reaction, the reduction of protons. These reactions occur via the intermediacy of metal hydrides. The inclusion of amine bases within the catalysts is an important design feature that is emulated in related bioinspired catalysts. Continuing challenges are the low reactivity of H2 towards biomimetic H2ases. PMID:20356731

  18. Evaluation of artificial neural network algorithms for predicting METs and activity type from accelerometer data: validation on an independent sample.

    PubMed

    Freedson, Patty S; Lyden, Kate; Kozey-Keadle, Sarah; Staudenmayer, John

    2011-12-01

    Previous work from our laboratory provided a "proof of concept" for use of artificial neural networks (nnets) to estimate metabolic equivalents (METs) and identify activity type from accelerometer data (Staudenmayer J, Pober D, Crouter S, Bassett D, Freedson P, J Appl Physiol 107: 1330-1307, 2009). The purpose of this study was to develop new nnets based on a larger, more diverse, training data set and apply these nnet prediction models to an independent sample to evaluate the robustness and flexibility of this machine-learning modeling technique. The nnet training data set (University of Massachusetts) included 277 participants who each completed 11 activities. The independent validation sample (n = 65) (University of Tennessee) completed one of three activity routines. Criterion measures were 1) measured METs assessed using open-circuit indirect calorimetry; and 2) observed activity to identify activity type. The nnet input variables included five accelerometer count distribution features and the lag-1 autocorrelation. The bias and root mean square errors for the nnet MET trained on University of Massachusetts and applied to University of Tennessee were +0.32 and 1.90 METs, respectively. Seventy-seven percent of the activities were correctly classified as sedentary/light, moderate, or vigorous intensity. For activity type, household and locomotion activities were correctly classified by the nnet activity type 98.1 and 89.5% of the time, respectively, and sport was correctly classified 23.7% of the time. Use of this machine-learning technique operates reasonably well when applied to an independent sample. We propose the creation of an open-access activity dictionary, including accelerometer data from a broad array of activities, leading to further improvements in prediction accuracy for METs, activity intensity, and activity type.

  19. Evaluation of artificial neural network algorithms for predicting METs and activity type from accelerometer data: validation on an independent sample

    PubMed Central

    Lyden, Kate; Kozey-Keadle, Sarah; Staudenmayer, John

    2011-01-01

    Previous work from our laboratory provided a “proof of concept” for use of artificial neural networks (nnets) to estimate metabolic equivalents (METs) and identify activity type from accelerometer data (Staudenmayer J, Pober D, Crouter S, Bassett D, Freedson P, J Appl Physiol 107: 1330–1307, 2009). The purpose of this study was to develop new nnets based on a larger, more diverse, training data set and apply these nnet prediction models to an independent sample to evaluate the robustness and flexibility of this machine-learning modeling technique. The nnet training data set (University of Massachusetts) included 277 participants who each completed 11 activities. The independent validation sample (n = 65) (University of Tennessee) completed one of three activity routines. Criterion measures were 1) measured METs assessed using open-circuit indirect calorimetry; and 2) observed activity to identify activity type. The nnet input variables included five accelerometer count distribution features and the lag-1 autocorrelation. The bias and root mean square errors for the nnet MET trained on University of Massachusetts and applied to University of Tennessee were +0.32 and 1.90 METs, respectively. Seventy-seven percent of the activities were correctly classified as sedentary/light, moderate, or vigorous intensity. For activity type, household and locomotion activities were correctly classified by the nnet activity type 98.1 and 89.5% of the time, respectively, and sport was correctly classified 23.7% of the time. Use of this machine-learning technique operates reasonably well when applied to an independent sample. We propose the creation of an open-access activity dictionary, including accelerometer data from a broad array of activities, leading to further improvements in prediction accuracy for METs, activity intensity, and activity type. PMID:21885802

  20. Selenium status and GSH-Px activity in semen and blood of boars at different ages used for artificial insemination.

    PubMed

    Lasota, B; Błaszczyk, B; Seremak, B; Udała, J

    2004-10-01

    This study was performed to determine the relationship between selenium (Se) content and Se-dependent glutathione peroxidase (GSH-Px) activity in blood and semen, and semen quality of boars at different age used in an artificial insemination (AI) station. Routine macroscopic and microscopic analyses of semen quality were accompanied by measurement of Se content and GSH-Px activity in blood and semen. The Se concentration in blood plasma, seminal fluid and spermatozoa was measured by fluorometric method, the GSH-Px activity by a method based on NADPH-coupled reaction. A total of 155 ejaculates and 58 blood samples were investigated. The results of this study showed that there was no direct relationship between the Se content and GSH-Px activity in blood plasma and semen, and semen quality of sexual matured boars. The mechanisms controlling Se content and GSH-Px activity in blood and semen seem to be independent. The age of boars as a differentiating factor for Se content and GSH-Px activity in blood and semen is possible. It is concluded that a determination of Se status and/or GSH-Px activity in organism before Se supplementation is indicated.

  1. Activity levels and expression of antioxidant enzymes in the ascorbate-glutathione cycle in artificially aged rice seed.

    PubMed

    Yin, Guangkun; Xin, Xia; Song, Chao; Chen, Xiaoling; Zhang, Jinmei; Wu, Shuhua; Li, Ruifang; Liu, Xu; Lu, Xinxiong

    2014-07-01

    Reactive oxygen species are the main contributors to seed deterioration. In order to study scavenging systems for reactive oxygen species in aged seed, we performed analyses using western blotting, real-time quantitative reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction, high-performance liquid chromatography, and antioxidant enzyme activity analyses in artificially aged rice seeds (Oryza sativa L. cv. wanhua no.11). Aging seeds by storing them at 50 °C for 1, 9, or 17 months increased the superoxide radical and hydrogen peroxide levels and reduced the germination percentage from 99% to 92%, 55%, and 2%, respectively. The activity levels of superoxide dismutase (SOD), glutathione reductase (GR), and dehydroascorbate reductase (DHAR) did not change in aged seeds. In contrast, the activity levels of catalase (CAT), ascorbate peroxidase (APX), and monodehydroascorbate reductase (MDHAR) were significantly decreased in aged seeds, as were the expression of catalase and cytosolic ascorbate peroxidase protein. Transcript accumulation analysis showed that specific expression patterns were complex for each of the antioxidant enzyme types in the rice embryos. Overall, the expression of most genes was down-regulated, along with their protein expression. In addition, the reduction in the amount of ascorbate and glutathione was associated with the reduction in scavenging enzymes activity in aged rice embryos. Our data suggest that the depression of the antioxidant system, especially the reduction in the expression of CAT1, APX1 and MDHAR1, may be responsible for the accumulation of reactive oxygen species in artificially aged seed embryos, leading to a loss of seed vigor. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  2. LUMBAR DISC HERNIATION

    PubMed Central

    Vialle, Luis Roberto; Vialle, Emiliano Neves; Suárez Henao, Juan Esteban; Giraldo, Gustavo

    2015-01-01

    Lumbar disc herniation is the most common diagnosis among the degenerative abnormalities of the lumbar spine (affecting 2 to 3% of the population), and is the principal cause of spinal surgery among the adult population. The typical clinical picture includes initial lumbalgia, followed by progressive sciatica. The natural history of disc herniation is one of rapid resolution of the symptoms (four to six weeks). The initial treatment should be conservative, managed through medication and physiotherapy, sometimes associated with percutaneous nerve root block. Surgical treatment is indicated if pain control is unsuccessful, if there is a motor deficit greater than grade 3, if there is radicular pain associated with foraminal stenosis, or if cauda equina syndrome is present. The latter represents a medical emergency. A refined surgical technique, with removal of the extruded fragment and preservation of the ligamentum flavum, resolves the sciatic symptoms and reduces the risk of recurrence over the long term. PMID:27019834

  3. Biomechanics of Disc Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Palepu, V.; Kodigudla, M.; Goel, V. K.

    2012-01-01

    Disc degeneration and associated disorders are among the most debated topics in the orthopedic literature over the past few decades. These may be attributed to interrelated mechanical, biochemical, and environmental factors. The treatment options vary from conservative approaches to surgery, depending on the severity of degeneration and response to conservative therapies. Spinal fusion is considered to be the “gold standard” in surgical methods till date. However, the association of adjacent level degeneration has led to the evolution of motion preservation technologies like spinal arthroplasty and posterior dynamic stabilization systems. These new technologies are aimed to address pain and preserve motion while maintaining a proper load sharing among various spinal elements. This paper provides an elaborative biomechanical review of the technologies aimed to address the disc degeneration and reiterates the point that biomechanical efficacy followed by long-term clinical success will allow these nonfusion technologies as alternatives to fusion, at least in certain patient population. PMID:22745914

  4. Two-dimensional artificial light-harvesting antennae with predesigned high-order structure and robust photosensitising activity

    PubMed Central

    Feng, Xiao; Ding, Xuesong; Chen, Long; Wu, Yang; Liu, Lili; Addicoat, Matthew; Irle, Stephan; Dong, Yuping; Jiang, Donglin

    2016-01-01

    Highly ordered discrete assemblies of chlorophylls that are found in natural light-harvesting antennae are key to photosynthesis, which converts light energy to chemical energy and is the principal producer of organic matter on Earth. Porphyrins and phthalocyanines, which are analogues of chlorophylls, exhibit a strong absorbance of visible and near-infrared light, respectively. A highly ordered porphyrin-co-phthalocyanine antennae would harvest photons over the entire solar spectrum for chemical transformation. However, such a robust antennae has not yet been synthesised. Herein, we report a strategy that merges covalent bonds and noncovalent forces to produce highly ordered two-dimensional porphyrin-co-phthalocyanine antennae. This methodology enables control over the stoichiometry and order of the porphyrin and phthalocyanine units; more importantly, this approach is compatible with various metalloporphyrin and metallophthalocyanine derivatives and thus may lead to the generation of a broad structural diversity of two-dimensional artificial antennae. These ordered porphyrin-co-phthalocyanine two-dimensional antennae exhibit unique optical properties and catalytic functions that are not available with single-component or non-structured materials. These 2D artificial antennae exhibit exceptional light-harvesting capacity over the entire solar spectrum as a result of a synergistic light-absorption effect. In addition, they exhibit outstanding photosensitising activities in using both visible and near-infrared photons for producing singlet oxygen. PMID:27622274

  5. Two-dimensional artificial light-harvesting antennae with predesigned high-order structure and robust photosensitising activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Feng, Xiao; Ding, Xuesong; Chen, Long; Wu, Yang; Liu, Lili; Addicoat, Matthew; Irle, Stephan; Dong, Yuping; Jiang, Donglin

    2016-09-01

    Highly ordered discrete assemblies of chlorophylls that are found in natural light-harvesting antennae are key to photosynthesis, which converts light energy to chemical energy and is the principal producer of organic matter on Earth. Porphyrins and phthalocyanines, which are analogues of chlorophylls, exhibit a strong absorbance of visible and near-infrared light, respectively. A highly ordered porphyrin-co-phthalocyanine antennae would harvest photons over the entire solar spectrum for chemical transformation. However, such a robust antennae has not yet been synthesised. Herein, we report a strategy that merges covalent bonds and noncovalent forces to produce highly ordered two-dimensional porphyrin-co-phthalocyanine antennae. This methodology enables control over the stoichiometry and order of the porphyrin and phthalocyanine units; more importantly, this approach is compatible with various metalloporphyrin and metallophthalocyanine derivatives and thus may lead to the generation of a broad structural diversity of two-dimensional artificial antennae. These ordered porphyrin-co-phthalocyanine two-dimensional antennae exhibit unique optical properties and catalytic functions that are not available with single-component or non-structured materials. These 2D artificial antennae exhibit exceptional light-harvesting capacity over the entire solar spectrum as a result of a synergistic light-absorption effect. In addition, they exhibit outstanding photosensitising activities in using both visible and near-infrared photons for producing singlet oxygen.

  6. Total disc replacement.

    PubMed

    Vital, J-M; Boissière, L

    2014-02-01

    Total disc replacement (TDR) (partial disc replacement will not be described) has been used in the lumbar spine since the 1980s, and more recently in the cervical spine. Although the biomechanical concepts are the same and both are inserted through an anterior approach, lumbar TDR is conventionally indicated for chronic low back pain, whereas cervical TDR is used for soft discal hernia resulting in cervicobrachial neuralgia. The insertion technique must be rigorous, with precise centering in the disc space, taking account of vascular anatomy, which is more complex in the lumbar region, particularly proximally to L5-S1. All of the numerous studies, including prospective randomized comparative trials, have demonstrated non-inferiority to fusion, or even short-term superiority regarding speed of improvement. The main implant-related complication is bridging heterotopic ossification with resulting loss of range of motion and increased rates of adjacent segment degeneration, although with an incidence lower than after arthrodesis. A sufficiently long follow-up, which has not yet been reached, will be necessary to establish definitively an advantage for TDR, particularly in the cervical spine. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  7. Effect of noxious electrical stimulation of the peroneal nerve on stretch reflex activity of the hamstring muscle in rats: possible implications of neuronal mechanisms in the development of tight hamstrings in lumbar disc herniation.

    PubMed

    Hirayama, Jiro; Yamagata, Masatsune; Takahashi, Kazuhisa; Moriya, Hideshige

    2005-05-01

    The effect of noxious electrical stimulation of the peroneal nerve on the stretch reflex electromyogram activity of the hamstring muscle (semitendinous) was studied. To verify the following hypothetical mechanisms underlying tight hamstrings in lumbar disc herniation: stretch reflex muscle activity of hamstrings is increased by painful inputs from an injured spinal nerve root and the increased stretch reflex muscle activity is maintained by central sensitization. It is reported that stretch reflex activity of the trunk muscles is induced by noxious stimulation of the sciatic nerve and maintained by central sensitization. In spinalized rats (transected spinal cord), the peroneal nerve was stimulated electrically as a conditioning stimulus. Stretch reflex electromyogram activity of the semitendinous muscle was recorded before and after the conditioning stimulus. Even after electrical stimulation was terminated, an increased stretch reflex activity of the hamstring muscle was observed. It is likely that a central sensitization mechanism at the spinal cord level was involved in the increased reflex activity. Central sensitization may play a part in the neuronal mechanisms of tight hamstrings in lumbar disc herniation.

  8. Mechanics of Actuated Disc Cutting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dehkhoda, Sevda; Detournay, Emmanuel

    2017-02-01

    This paper investigates the mechanics of an actuated disc cutter with the objective of determining the average forces acting on the disc as a function of the parameters characterizing its motion. The specific problem considered is that of a disc cutter revolving off-centrically at constant angular velocity around a secondary axis rigidly attached to a cartridge, which is moving at constant velocity and undercutting rock at a constant depth. This model represents an idealization of a technology that has been implemented in a number of hard rock mechanical excavators with the goal of reducing the average thrust force to be provided by the excavation equipment. By assuming perfect conformance of the rock with the actuated disc as well as a prescribed motion of the disc (perfectly rigid machine), the evolution of the contact surface between the disc and the rock during one actuation of the disc can be computed. Coupled with simple cutter/rock interaction models that embody either a ductile or a brittle mode of fragmentation, these kinematical considerations lead to an estimate of the average force on the cartridge and of the partitioning of the energy imparted by the disc to the rock between the actuation mechanism of the disc and the translation of the cartridge on which the actuated disc is attached.

  9. Polarimetric microlensing of circumstellar discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sajadian, Sedighe; Rahvar, Sohrab

    2015-12-01

    We study the benefits of polarimetry observations of microlensing events to detect and characterize circumstellar discs around the microlensed stars located at the Galactic bulge. These discs which are unresolvable from their host stars make a net polarization effect due to their projected elliptical shapes. Gravitational microlensing can magnify these signals and make them be resolved. The main aim of this work is to determine what extra information about these discs can be extracted from polarimetry observations of microlensing events in addition to those given by photometry ones. Hot discs which are closer to their host stars are more likely to be detected by microlensing, owing to more contributions in the total flux. By considering this kind of discs, we show that although the polarimetric efficiency for detecting discs is similar to the photometric observation, but polarimetry observations can help to constraint the disc geometrical parameters e.g. the disc inner radius and the lens trajectory with respect to the disc semimajor axis. On the other hand, the time-scale of polarimetric curves of these microlensing events generally increases while their photometric time-scale does not change. By performing a Monte Carlo simulation, we show that almost four optically thin discs around the Galactic bulge sources are detected (or even characterized) through photometry (or polarimetry) observations of high-magnification microlensing events during 10-yr monitoring of 150 million objects.

  10. Mg-dechelation activity in radish cotyledons with artificial and native substrates, Mg-chlorophyllin a and chlorophyllide a.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, Toshiyuki; Kunieda, Tadashi; Murai, Fumiko; Morioka, Satoshi; Shioi, Yuzo

    2005-05-01

    The Mg-dechelation activity in extracts from radish (Raphanus sativus L.) cotyledons was investigated using an artificial substrate, Mg-chlorophyllin a (Chlin) and the native substrate, chlorophyllide a (Chlide). In addition to a known a small molecular weight metal-chelating substance (MCS), Mg-releasing protein (MRP) was present when Chlin was used as the substrate. However, only MCS had Mg-dechelation activity with the native substrate. To examine the possibility of the dissociation of MRP into a protein moiety and a small molecular mass compound with an activity like MCS, extraction with low and high ionic strength buffers was carried out. No evidence was obtained that MCS is a moiety of MRP, however. Inhibitor studies showed that MCS and MRP had different susceptibilities to the inhibitors, especially to the chelators tiron and EDTA when Chlin was used as the substrate. Tiron had no effect on MRP, but it severely reduced MCS activity in both substrates. The activity of MRP increased during senescence, indicating the induction of MRP, while the activity of MCS was almost unchanged. These results suggest different reaction mechanisms by independent compounds. These findings suggest that MRP and MCS are present independently, and MCS is postulated to be a substance that catalyzes the Mg-dechelation reaction in the breakdown pathway of Chl, although MCS was not induced during senescence. The properties of MRP and MCS in relation to the small molecular mass substance obtained from strawberry fruit are also discussed.

  11. Removal effectiveness and mechanisms of naphthalene and heavy metals from artificially contaminated soil by iron chelate-activated persulfate.

    PubMed

    Yan, Dickson Y S; Lo, Irene M C

    2013-07-01

    The effectiveness and mechanisms of naphthalene and metal removal from artificially contaminated soil by FeEDTA/FeEDDS-activated persulfate were investigated through batch experiments. Using FeEDTA-activated persulfate, higher naphthalene removal from the soil at 7 h was achieved (89%), compared with FeEDDS-activated persulfate (75%). The removal was mainly via the dissolution of naphthalene partitioned on mineral surfaces, followed by activated persulfate oxidation. Although EDDS is advantageous over EDTA in terms of biodegradability, it is not preferable for iron chelate-activated persulfate oxidation since persulfate was consumed to oxidize EDDS, resulting in persulfate inadequacy for naphthalene oxidation. Besides, 55 and 40% of naphthalene were removed by FeEDTA and FeEDDS alone, respectively. Particularly, 21 and 9% of naphthalene were degraded in the presence of FeEDTA and FeEDDS alone, respectively, which caused by electrons transfer among dissolved organic matter, Fe(2+)/Fe(3+) and naphthalene. Over 35, 36 and 45% of Cu, Pb and Zn were removed using FeEDTA/FeEDDS-activated persulfate. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Total Artificial Heart Implantation as a Bridge to Heart Transplantation in an Active Duty Service Member With Amyloid Cardiomyopathy.

    PubMed

    Scully, Michael S; Wessman, Dylan E; McKee, James M; Francisco, Gregory M; Nayak, Keshav R; Kobashigawa, Jon A

    2017-03-01

    Cardiac involvement by light-chain (AL) amyloid occurs in up to 50% of patients with primary AL amyloidosis. The prognosis of amyloid heart disease is poor with 1-year survival rates of 35 to 40%. Historically, heart transplantation was considered controversial for patients with AL amyloid cardiomyopathy (CM) given the systemic nature of the disease and poor survival. We present a case report of an active duty service member diagnosed with advanced cardiac amyloid who underwent total artificial heart transplant as a bridge to heart transplant and eventual autologous stem cell transplant. A 47-year-old active duty male initially evaluated for atypical chest pain was found to have severe concentric left ventricular hypertrophy on echocardiogram but normal voltage on electrocardiogram. Cardiac magnetic resonance imaging, laboratory studies, and bone marrow biopsy established the diagnosis of cardiac amyloidosis. At the time of diagnosis, the patient's prognosis was very poor with a median survival of 5 months on the basis of the Mayo Clinic revised prognostic staging system for amyloidosis. The patient developed rapidly progressive left ventricular dysfunction and heart failure leading to cardiac arrest. The patient received a total artificial heart as a bridge to orthotopic heart and kidney transplantation and eventual stem cell transplant. He continues to be in remission and has a fair functional capacity without restriction in activities of daily living or moderate exercise. Amyloid CM is a rare and devastating disease. The natural course of the disease has made heart transplant in these patients controversial. Modern advancements in chemotherapies and advanced heart failure treatments have improved outcomes for select patients with AL amyloid CM undergoing heart transplantation. There is ongoing research seeking improvement in treatment options and outcomes for patients with this deadly disease. Reprint & Copyright © 2017 Association of Military Surgeons of the U.S.

  13. Artificial Intelligence,

    DTIC Science & Technology

    PATTERN RECOGNITION, * ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE , *TEXTBOOKS, COMPUTER PROGRAMMING, MATHEMATICAL LOGIC, ROBOTS, PROBLEM SOLVING, STATISTICAL ANALYSIS, GAME THEORY, NATURAL LANGUAGE, SELF ORGANIZING SYSTEMS.

  14. Dust dynamics in 2D gravito-turbulent discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shi, Ji-Ming; Zhu, Zhaohuan; Stone, James M.; Chiang, Eugene

    2016-06-01

    The dynamics of solid bodies in protoplanetary discs are subject to the properties of any underlying gas turbulence. Turbulence driven by disc self-gravity shows features distinct from those driven by the magnetorotational instability (MRI). We study the dynamics of solids in gravito-turbulent discs with two-dimensional (in the disc plane), hybrid (particle and gas) simulations. Gravito-turbulent discs can exhibit stronger gravitational stirring than MRI-active discs, resulting in greater radial diffusion and larger eccentricities and relative speeds for large particles (those with dimensionless stopping times tstopΩ > 1, where Ω is the orbital frequency). The agglomeration of large particles into planetesimals by pairwise collisions is therefore disfavoured in gravito-turbulent discs. However, the relative speeds of intermediate-size particles (tstopΩ ˜ 1) are significantly reduced as such particles are collected by gas drag and gas gravity into coherent filament-like structures with densities high enough to trigger gravitational collapse. First-generation planetesimals may form via gravitational instability of dust in marginally gravitationally unstable gas discs.

  15. Disc-mass distribution in star-disc encounters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Steinhausen, M.; Olczak, C.; Pfalzner, S.

    2012-02-01

    Aims: Investigations of stellar encounters in cluster environments have demonstrated their potential influence on the mass and angular momentum of protoplanetary discs around young stars. We investigated how far the initial surface density in the disc surrounding a young star influences the outcome of an encounter. Methods: The numerical method applied here allows us to determine the mass and angular momentum losses in an encounter for any initial disc-mass distribution. On the basis of a power-law ansatz for the surface density, Σ(r) ∝ r - p, we perform a parameter study of star-disc encounters with different initial disc-mass distributions using N-body simulations. Results: We demonstrate that the shape of the disc-mass distribution has a significant impact on the quantity of the disc-mass and angular momentum losses in star-disc encounters. In particular, the results are most sensitive to how the outer parts of the disc are perturbed by high-mass stars. In contrast, disc-penetrating encounters lead more or less independently of the disc-mass distribution always to large losses. However, maximum losses are generally obtained for initially flat distributed disc material. Based on a parameter study, a fit formula is derived, describing how the relative mass and angular momentum loss depend on the initial disc-mass distribution index p. Encounters generally lead to a steepening of the density profile of the disc. The resulting profiles can have a r-2-dependence or an even steeper one that is independent of the initial distribution of the disc material. Conclusions: From observations, the initial density distribution in discs remains unconstrained, hence the strong dependence on the initial density distribution that we find here might require a revision of the effect of encounters in young stellar clusters. The steep surface density distributions induced by some encounters might be a prerequisite to the formation of planetary systems similar to our own Solar

  16. Disrupted-in-schizophrenia 1 (DISC1) plays essential roles in mitochondria in collaboration with Mitofilin

    PubMed Central

    Park, Young-Un; Jeong, Jaehoon; Lee, Haeryun; Mun, Ji Young; Kim, Joung-Hun; Lee, Jong Seo; Nguyen, Minh Dang; Han, Sung Sik; Suh, Pann-Ghill; Park, Sang Ki

    2010-01-01

    Disrupted-in-schizophrenia 1 (DISC1) has emerged as a schizophrenia-susceptibility gene affecting various neuronal functions. In this study, we characterized Mitofilin, a mitochondrial inner membrane protein, as a mediator of the mitochondrial function of DISC1. A fraction of DISC1 was localized to the inside of mitochondria and directly interacts with Mitofilin. A reduction in DISC1 function induced mitochondrial dysfunction, evidenced by decreased mitochondrial NADH dehydrogenase activities, reduced cellular ATP contents, and perturbed mitochondrial Ca2+ dynamics. In addition, deficiencies in DISC1 and Mitofilin induced a reduction in mitochondrial monoamine oxidase-A activity. The mitochondrial dysfunctions evoked by the deficiency of DISC1 were partially phenocopied by an overexpression of truncated DISC1 that is associated with schizophrenia in human. DISC1 deficiencies induced the ubiquitination of Mitofilin, suggesting that DISC1 is critical for the stability of Mitofilin. Finally, the mitochondrial dysfunction induced by DISC1 deficiency was partially reversed by coexpression of Mitofilin, confirming a functional link between DISC1 and Mitofilin for the normal mitochondrial function. According to these results, we propose that DISC1 plays essential roles for mitochondrial function in collaboration with a mitochondrial interacting partner, Mitofilin. PMID:20880836

  17. Manipulation of zebrafish's orientation using artificial cilia in a microchannel with actively adaptive wall design.

    PubMed

    Mani, Karthick; Chang Chien, Tsung-Chun; Panigrahi, Bivas; Chen, Chia-Yuan

    2016-11-08

    The zebrafish is a powerful genetic model organism especially in the biomedical chapter for new drug discovery and development. The genetic toolbox which this vertebrate possesses opens a new window to investigate the etiology of human diseases with a high degree genetic similarity. Still, the requirements of laborious and time-consuming of contemporary zebrafish processing assays limit the procedure in carrying out such genetic screen at high throughput. Here, a zebrafish control scheme was initiated which includes the design and validation of a microfluidic platform to significantly increase the throughput and performance of zebrafish larvae manipulation using the concept of artificial cilia actuation. A moving wall design was integrated into this microfluidic platform first time in literature to accommodate zebrafish inside the microchannel from 1 day post-fertilization (dpf) to 6 dpf and can be further extended to 9 dpf for axial orientation control in a rotational range between 0 to 25 degrees at the minimum step of 2-degree increment in a stepwise manner. This moving wall feature was performed through the deflection of shape memory alloy wire embedded inside the microchannel controlled by the electrical waveforms with high accuracy.

  18. Effectiveness of Photogem® activated by LED on the decontamination of artificial carious bovine dentin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giusti, J. S. M.; Santos-Pinto, L.; Pizzolitto, A. C.; Kurachi, C.; Bagnato, V. S.

    2006-05-01

    The aim of this study was the evaluation of the effectiveness of photodynamic therapy on the decontamination of artificially induced carious bovine dentin, using Photogem® as the photosensitizer agent and an LED device as a light source. Dentin samples obtained from bovine incisors were immersed in sterile broth supplemented by Lactobacillus acidophillus 108 colony formation units (CFU) and Streptococcus mutans 108 CFU. Different concentrations of photosensitizer, PA = 1 mg/ml, PB = 2 mg/ml, and PC = 3 mg/ml, and two fluences, D = 24 J/cm2 and D = 48 J/cm2, were investigated. After CFU counting per milligram of carious dentin and statistical analysis, we observed that the photodynamic therapy (PDT) parameters used were effective for bacterial reduction in the in vitro model under study. The best result was achieved with the application of Photogem® at 2 mg/ml and photoactivated under 24 J/cm2 showing a survival factor of 0.14. At higher photosensitizer concentrations, a higher dark toxicity was observed. We propose a simple mathematical expression for the determination of PDT parameters of photosensitizer concentration and light fluence for different survival factor values. Since LED devices are simpler and cheaper compared to laser systems, it would be interesting to verify their efficacy as a light source in photodynamic therapy for the decontamination of carious dentin.

  19. Pyrroloquinoline quinone-dependent carbohydrate dehydrogenase: activity enhancement and the role of artificial electron acceptors.

    PubMed

    Kulys, Juozas; Tetianec, Lidija; Bratkovskaja, Irina

    2010-08-01

    Pyrroloquinoline quinone (PQQ)-dependent glucose dehydrogenase (PQQ-GDH) offers a variety of opportunities for applications, e.g. in highly sensitive biosensors and electrosynthetic reactions. Here we report on the acceleration (up to 4.9 x 10(4)-fold) of enzymatic ferricyanide reduction by artificial redox mediators (enhancers). The reaction mechanism includes reduction of the PQQ-GDH by glucose followed by oxidation of the reduced PQQ cofactor with either ferricyanide or a redox mediator. A synergistic effect occurs through the oxidation of a reduced mediator by ferricyanide. Using kinetic description of the coupled reaction, the second order rate constant for the reaction of an oxidized mediator with the reduced enzyme cofactor (k(ox)) can be calculated. For different mediators this value is 2.2 x 10(6)-1.6 x 10(8) M(-1)s(-1) at pH 7.2 and 25 degrees C. However, no correlation of the rate constant with the midpoint redox potential of the mediator could be established. For low-potential mediators the synergistic effect is proportional to the ratio of k(ox(med))/k(ox(ferricyanide)), whereas for the high-potential mediators the effect depends on both this ratio and the concentration of the oxidized mediator, which can be calculated from the Nernst equation. The described effect can be applied in various ways, e.g. for substrate reactivity determination, electrosynthetic PQQ cofactor regeneration or building of new highly sensitive biosensors.

  20. Is artificial recharge promoting microbial activity and biodegradation processes in groundwater systems?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barba Ferrer, Carme; Folch, Albert; Gaju, Núria; Martínez-Alonso, Maira; Carrasquilla, Marc; Grau-Martínez, Alba; Sanchez-Vila, Xavier

    2016-04-01

    Managed Artificial Recharge (MAR) represents a strategic tool for managing water resources, especially during scarce periods. On one hand, it can increase water stored in aquifers and extract it when weather conditions do not permit exclusive exploitation of surface resources. On the other, it allows improve water quality due the processes occurring into the soil whereas water crosses vadose zone. Barcelona (Catalonia, Spain) conurbation is suffering significant quantitative and qualitative groundwater disturbances. For this reason, Sant Vicenç MAR system, constituted by a sedimentation and an infiltration pond, was constructed in 2009 as the strategic water management infrastructure. Compared with other MAR facilities, this infiltration pond has a reactive bed formed by organic compost and local material. The objective is to promote different redox states allowing more and different degradation of chemical compounds than regular MAR systems. In previous studies in the site, physical and hydrochemical parameters demonstrated that there was indeed a degradation of different pollutants. However, to go a step further understanding the different biogeochemical processes and the related degradation processes occurring in the system, we studied the existing microbial communities. So, molecular techniques were applied in water and soil samples in two different scenarios; the first one, when the system was fully operating and the second when the system was not operating during some months. We have specifically compared microbial diversity and richness indexes and both cluster dendrograms obtained from DGGEs analysis made in each sampling campaign.

  1. Enclosed rotary disc air pulser

    DOEpatents

    Olson, A. L.; Batcheller, Tom A.; Rindfleisch, J. A.; Morgan, John M.

    1989-01-01

    An enclosed rotary disc air pulser for use with a solvent extraction pulse olumn includes a housing having inlet, exhaust and pulse leg ports, a shaft mounted in the housing and adapted for axial rotation therein, first and second disc members secured to the shaft within the housing in spaced relation to each other to define a chamber therebetween, the chamber being in communication with the pulse leg port, the first disc member located adjacent the inlet port, the second disc member being located adjacent the exhaust port, each disc member having a milled out portion, the disc members positioned on the shaft so that as the shaft rotates, the milled out portions permit alternative cyclical communication between the inlet port and the chamber and the exhaust port and the chamber.

  2. Heat distribution in disc brake

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klimenda, Frantisek; Soukup, Josef; Kampo, Jan

    2016-06-01

    This article is deals by the thermal analysis of the disc brake with floating caliper. The issue is solved by numerically. The half 2D model is used for solution in program ADINA 8.8. Two brake discs without the ventilation are solved. One disc is made from cast iron and the second is made from stainless steel. Both materials are an isotropic. By acting the pressure force on the brake pads will be pressing the pads to the brake disc. Speed will be reduced (slowing down). On the contact surface generates the heat, which the disc and pads heats. In the next part of article is comparison the maximum temperature at the time of braking. The temperatures of both materials for brake disc (gray cast iron, stainless steel) are compares. The heat flux during braking for the both materials is shown.

  3. Hourly photosynthetically active radiation estimation in Midwestern United States from artificial neural networks and conventional regressions models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, Xiaolei; Guo, Xulin

    2016-08-01

    The relationship between hourly photosynthetically active radiation (PAR) and the global solar radiation ( R s ) was analyzed from data gathered over 3 years at Bondville, IL, and Sioux Falls, SD, Midwestern USA. These data were used to determine temporal variability of the PAR fraction and its dependence on different sky conditions, which were defined by the clearness index. Meanwhile, models based on artificial neural networks (ANNs) were established for predicting hourly PAR. The performance of the proposed models was compared with four existing conventional regression models in terms of the normalized root mean square error (NRMSE), the coefficient of determination ( r 2), the mean percentage error (MPE), and the relative standard error (RSE). From the overall analysis, it shows that the ANN model can predict PAR accurately, especially for overcast sky and clear sky conditions. Meanwhile, the parameters related to water vapor do not improve the prediction result significantly.

  4. Hourly photosynthetically active radiation estimation in Midwestern United States from artificial neural networks and conventional regressions models.

    PubMed

    Yu, Xiaolei; Guo, Xulin

    2016-08-01

    The relationship between hourly photosynthetically active radiation (PAR) and the global solar radiation (R s ) was analyzed from data gathered over 3 years at Bondville, IL, and Sioux Falls, SD, Midwestern USA. These data were used to determine temporal variability of the PAR fraction and its dependence on different sky conditions, which were defined by the clearness index. Meanwhile, models based on artificial neural networks (ANNs) were established for predicting hourly PAR. The performance of the proposed models was compared with four existing conventional regression models in terms of the normalized root mean square error (NRMSE), the coefficient of determination (r (2)), the mean percentage error (MPE), and the relative standard error (RSE). From the overall analysis, it shows that the ANN model can predict PAR accurately, especially for overcast sky and clear sky conditions. Meanwhile, the parameters related to water vapor do not improve the prediction result significantly.

  5. Total disc replacement surgery for symptomatic degenerative lumbar disc disease: a systematic review of the literature

    PubMed Central

    van den Eerenbeemt, Karin D.; van Royen, Barend J.; Peul, Wilco C.; van Tulder, Maurits W.

    2010-01-01

    The objective of this study is to evaluate the effectiveness and safety of total disc replacement surgery compared with spinal fusion in patients with symptomatic lumbar disc degeneration. Low back pain (LBP), a major health problem in Western countries, can be caused by a variety of pathologies, one of which is degenerative disc disease (DDD). When conservative treatment fails, surgery might be considered. For a long time, lumbar fusion has been the “gold standard” of surgical treatment for DDD. Total disc replacement (TDR) has increased in popularity as an alternative for lumbar fusion. A comprehensive systematic literature search was performed up to October 2008. Two reviewers independently checked all retrieved titles and abstracts, and relevant full text articles for inclusion. Two reviewers independently assessed the risk of bias of included studies and extracted relevant data and outcomes. Three randomized controlled trials and 16 prospective cohort studies were identified. In all three trials, the total disc replacement was compared with lumbar fusion techniques. The Charité trial (designed as a non-inferiority trail) was considered to have a low risk of bias for the 2-year follow up, but a high risk of bias for the 5-year follow up. The Charité artificial disc was non-inferior to the BAK® Interbody Fusion System on a composite outcome of “clinical success” (57.1 vs. 46.5%, for the 2-year follow up; 57.8 vs. 51.2% for the 5-year follow up). There were no statistically significant differences in mean pain and physical function scores. The Prodisc artificial disc (also designed as a non-inferiority trail) was found to be statistically significant more effective when compared with the lumbar circumferential fusion on the composite outcome of “clinical success” (53.4 vs. 40.8%), but the risk of bias of this study was high. Moreover, there were no statistically significant differences in mean pain and physical function scores. The Flexicore trial

  6. Complications and reoperations of the SB Charité lumbar disc prosthesis: experience in 75 patients

    PubMed Central

    Punt, Ilona M.; Visser, Violette M.; van Rhijn, Lodewijk W.; Kurtz, Steven M.; Antonis, Jop; Schurink, Geert Willem H.

    2007-01-01

    Artificial disc prosthesis show fair to good short- and mid-term results. Long-term results are becoming apparent now, however, the incidence of late complications with this procedure remain poorly understood. In this report we will analyse late complications and discuss our experiences with salvage operations in patients with persistent pain after SB Charité disc prosthesis implantation. Seventy-five patients with persistent leg and back pain after insertion of an artificial disc prosthesis were enrolled in the study. In this negative selection frequently occurring late-complications were subsidence, wear, adjacent disc degeneration, facet joint degeneration and migration. In 15 patients we performed a posterior fusion without disc removal, and in 22 patients we removed 26 prostheses and performed a posterior and anterior fusion. The visual analogue scale (VAS) and Oswestry were examined before the salvage operation and after a follow-up period of at least 1 year, which is not yet available in all patients. The VAS and Oswestry decreased in the posterior group (n = 10) respectively from 8.0 (SD 0.9) to 6.3 (SD 2.1) and from 57.0 (SD 17.0) to 44.6 (SD 20.4); and in the disc removal group (n = 14) respectively from 8.0 (SD 0.9) to 5.6 (SD 2.7) and from 56.3 (SD 14.0) to 43.0 (SD 20.7). Serious late complications may occur following total disc replacement. Removal of the SB Charité artificial disc is feasible but with inherent risks. Removal of the disc prosthesis gives slightly better results than posterior fusion alone after a follow-up of at least 1 year. PMID:17929065

  7. The presence of pleiotrophin in the human intervertebral disc is associated with increased vascularization: an immunohistologic study.

    PubMed

    Johnson, William E B; Patterson, Angela M; Eisenstein, Stephen M; Roberts, Sally

    2007-05-20

    An immunohistological study of surgical specimens of human intervertebral disc. To examine the presence of pleiotrophin in diseased or damaged intervertebral disc tissue and the association between its presence and the extent of tissue vascularization and innervation. Increased levels of pleiotrophin, a growth and differentiation factor that is active in various pathophysiologic processes, including angiogenesis, has been associated with osteoarthritic changes of human articular cartilage. The association between pleiotrophin expression and pathologic conditions of the human intervertebral disc is unknown. Specimens of human lumbar intervertebral discs, obtained following surgical discectomy, were divided into 3 groups: non-degenerated discs (n = 7), degenerated discs (n = 6), and prolapsed discs (n = 11). Serial tissue sections of each specimen were immunostained to determine the presence of pleiotrophin, blood vessels (CD34-positive endothelial cells), and nerves (neurofilament 200 kDa [NF200]-positive nerve fibers). Pleiotrophin immunoreactivity was seen in disc cells, endothelial cells, and in the extracellular matrix in most specimens of intervertebral disc but was most prevalent in vascularized tissue in prolapsed discs. There was a significant correlation between the presence of pleiotrophin-positive disc cells and that of CD34-positive blood vessels. NF200-positive nerves were seen in vascularized areas of more degenerated discs, but nerves did not appear to codistribute with blood vessels or pleiotrophin positivity in prolapsed discs. Pleiotrophin is present in pathologic human intervertebral discs, and its prevalence and distribution suggest that it may play a role in neovascularization of diseased or damaged disc tissue.

  8. Artificial Intelligence.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Thornburg, David D.

    1986-01-01

    Overview of the artificial intelligence (AI) field provides a definition; discusses past research and areas of future research; describes the design, functions, and capabilities of expert systems and the "Turing Test" for machine intelligence; and lists additional sources for information on artificial intelligence. Languages of AI are…

  9. Artificial Intelligence.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Smith, Linda C.; And Others

    1988-01-01

    A series of articles focuses on artificial intelligence research and development to enhance information systems and services. Topics discussed include knowledge base designs, expert system development tools, natural language processing, expert systems for reference services, and the role that artificial intelligence concepts should have in…

  10. Artificial Intelligence.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Thornburg, David D.

    1986-01-01

    Overview of the artificial intelligence (AI) field provides a definition; discusses past research and areas of future research; describes the design, functions, and capabilities of expert systems and the "Turing Test" for machine intelligence; and lists additional sources for information on artificial intelligence. Languages of AI are…

  11. Automated docking of ligands to an artificial active site: augmenting crystallographic analysis with computer modeling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rosenfeld, Robin J.; Goodsell, David S.; Musah, Rabi A.; Morris, Garrett M.; Goodin, David B.; Olson, Arthur J.

    2003-08-01

    The W191G cavity of cytochrome c peroxidase is useful as a model system for introducing small molecule oxidation in an artificially created cavity. A set of small, cyclic, organic cations was previously shown to bind in the buried, solvent-filled pocket created by the W191G mutation. We docked these ligands and a set of non-binders in the W191G cavity using AutoDock 3.0. For the ligands, we compared docking predictions with experimentally determined binding energies and X-ray crystal structure complexes. For the ligands, predicted binding energies differed from measured values by ± 0.8 kcal/mol. For most ligands, the docking simulation clearly predicted a single binding mode that matched the crystallographic binding mode within 1.0 Å RMSD. For 2 ligands, where the docking procedure yielded an ambiguous result, solutions matching the crystallographic result could be obtained by including an additional crystallographically observed water molecule in the protein model. For the remaining 2 ligands, docking indicated multiple binding modes, consistent with the original electron density, suggesting disordered binding of these ligands. Visual inspection of the atomic affinity grid maps used in docking calculations revealed two patches of high affinity for hydrogen bond donating groups. Multiple solutions are predicted as these two sites compete for polar hydrogens in the ligand during the docking simulation. Ligands could be distinguished, to some extent, from non-binders using a combination of two trends: predicted binding energy and level of clustering. In summary, AutoDock 3.0 appears to be useful in predicting key structural and energetic features of ligand binding in the W191G cavity.

  12. Numbered nasal discs for waterfowl

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bartonek, J.C.; Dane, C.W.

    1964-01-01

    Numbered nasal discs were successfully used in studies requiring large numbers of individually marked waterfowl. The procedure for constructing these discs is outlined. Blue-winged teal (Anas discors) with 5/8-inch discs, and canvasback (Aythya valisineria) and redhead (A. americana) with 3/4-inch discs can be individually identified up to 50 and 80 yards, respectively, with a gunstock-mounted, 20-power spotting scope. The particular value of these markers is their durability, the number of combinations possible, and the apparent absence of behavioral or mortality influence among such species as the blue-winged teal.

  13. [Artificial organs].

    PubMed

    Raguin, Thibaut; Dupret-Bories, Agnès; Debry, Christian

    2017-01-01

    Research has been fighting against organ failure and shortage of donations by supplying artificial organs for many years. With the raise of new technologies, tissue engineering and regenerative medicine, many organs can benefit of an artificial equivalent: thanks to retinal implants some blind people can visualize stimuli, an artificial heart can be proposed in case of cardiac failure while awaiting for a heart transplant, artificial larynx enables laryngectomy patients to an almost normal life, while the diabetic can get a glycemic self-regulation controlled by smartphones with an artificial device. Dialysis devices become portable, as well as the oxygenation systems for terminal respiratory failure. Bright prospects are being explored or might emerge in a near future. However, the retrospective assessment of putative side effects is not yet sufficient. Finally, the cost of these new devices is significant even if the advent of three dimensional printers may reduce it. © 2017 médecine/sciences – Inserm.

  14. Artificial blood.

    PubMed

    Sarkar, Suman

    2008-07-01

    Artificial blood is a product made to act as a substitute for red blood cells. While true blood serves many different functions, artificial blood is designed for the sole purpose of transporting oxygen and carbon dioxide throughout the body. Depending on the type of artificial blood, it can be produced in different ways using synthetic production, chemical isolation, or recombinant biochemical technology. Development of the first blood substitutes dates back to the early 1600s, and the search for the ideal blood substitute continues. Various manufacturers have products in clinical trials; however, no truly safe and effective artificial blood product is currently marketed. It is anticipated that when an artificial blood product is available, it will have annual sales of over $7.6 billion in the United States alone.

  15. Inflammatory response of disc cells against Propionibacterium acnes depends on the presence of lumbar Modic changes.

    PubMed

    Dudli, Stefan; Miller, S; Demir-Deviren, S; Lotz, J C

    2017-09-07

    Intervertebral disc with Propionibacterium acnes (P. acnes) is suggested to be an etiology of Modic type I changes in the adjacent bone marrow. However it is unknown if disc cells can respond to P. acnes and if bone marrow cells respond to bacterial and disc metabolites draining from infected discs. Human disc cells (n = 10) were co-cultured with 10- and 100-fold excess of P. acnes over disc cells for 3 h and 24 h. Lipopolysaccharide was used as positive control. Expression of IL1, IL6, IL8, and CCL2 by disc cells was quantified by quantitative PCR. Lipase activity was measured in culture supernatants (n = 6). Human vertebral bone marrow mononuclear cells (BMNCs) (n = 2) were cultured in conditioned media from disc cell/P. acnes co-cultures and expression of IL1, IL6, IL8, and CCL2 was measured after 24 h. All disc cells responded to lipopolysaccharide but only 6/10 responded to P. acnes with increased cytokine expression. Cytokine increase was time- but not P. acnes concentration-dependent. Disc cell responsiveness was associated with the presence of lumbar Modic changes in the donor. Lipase activity was increased independent of disc cell responsiveness. BMNCs responded with inflammatory activity only when cultured in supernatants from responsive disc cell lines. Disc cell responsiveness to P. acnes associates with the presence of lumbar Modic changes. Furthermore, bone marrow cells had an inflammatory response to the cocktail of disc cytokines and P. acnes metabolites. These data indicate that low virulent P. acnes infection of the disc is a potential exacerbating factor to Modic changes.

  16. Rehabilitation after lumbar disc surgery.

    PubMed

    Ostelo, R W; de Vet, H C; Waddell, G; Kerckhoffs, M R; Leffers, P; van Tulder, M W

    2002-01-01

    Although several rehabilitation programs, physical fitness programs or protocols regarding instruction for patients to return to work after lumbar disc surgery have been suggested, little is known about the efficacy and effectiveness of these treatments. There are still persistent fears of causing re-injury, re-herniation, or instability. The objective of this systematic review was to evaluate the effectiveness of active treatments that are used in the rehabilitation after first-time lumbar disc surgery. We searched the MEDLINE, EMBASE and Psyclit databases up to April 2000 and the Cochrane Controlled Trials Register 2001, Issue 3. Both randomized and non-randomized controlled trials on any type of active rehabilitation program after first-time disc surgery were included. Two independent reviewers performed the inclusion of studies and two other reviewers independently performed the methodological quality assessment. A rating system that consists of four levels of scientific evidence summarizes the results. Thirteen studies were included, six of which were of high quality. There is no strong evidence for the effectiveness for any treatment starting immediately post-surgery, mainly because of lack of (good quality) studies. For treatments that start four to six weeks post-surgery there is strong evidence (level 1) that intensive exercise programs are more effective on functional status and faster return to work (short-term follow-up) as compared to mild exercise programs and there is strong evidence (level 1) that on long term follow up there is no difference between intensive exercise programs and mild exercise programs with regard to overall improvement. For all other primary outcome measures for the comparison between intensive and mild exercise programs there is conflicting evidence (level 3) with regard to long-term follow-up. Furthermore, there is no strong evidence for the effectiveness of supervised training as compared to home exercises. There was also no

  17. [Temporomandibular joint disc surgery].

    PubMed

    Potier, J; Maes, J-M; Nicot, R; Dumousseau, T; Cotelle, M; Ferri, J

    2016-09-01

    Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders are a common disease and may be responsible for major functional and painful repercussions. Treatment is not consensual. The literature highlights the role of conservative treatments (physiotherapy, analgesics, splints) in a first attempt. Minimally invasive surgical techniques (arthroscopy, arthrocentesis) have developed rapidly in recent decades. They have proven effective and reliable, especially in patients suffering from irreducible or reducible anterior disc dislocation or presenting with arthopathies. The goal of our work was to make an update about disk surgery. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  18. 26 CFR 1.6011-2 - Returns, etc., of DISC's and former DISC's.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... 26 Internal Revenue 13 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Returns, etc., of DISC's and former DISC's. 1... (CONTINUED) INCOME TAX (CONTINUED) INCOME TAXES Tax Returns Or Statements § 1.6011-2 Returns, etc., of DISC's and former DISC's. (a) Records and information. Every DISC and former DISC (as defined in section 992...

  19. Preparation of ormetoprim sulfadimethoxine medicated discs for disc diffusion assay

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Romet (a blend of ormetoprim and sulfadimethoxine) is a typeA medicated article for the manufacture of medicated feed in the catfish industry. Recently, the commercial manufacture of ormetoprim–sulfadimethoxine susceptibility discs was discontinued. Ormetoprim–sulfadimethoxine discs were prepared at...

  20. Sizes of protoplanetary discs after star-disc encounters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Breslau, Andreas; Steinhausen, Manuel; Vincke, Kirsten; Pfalzner, Susanne

    2014-05-01

    Most stars do not form in isolation, but as part of a star cluster or association. These young stars are initially surrounded by protoplanetary discs. In these cluster environments tidal interactions with other cluster members can alter the disc properties. Besides the disc frequency, its mass, angular momentum, and energy, the disc's size is particularly prone to being changed by a passing star. So far the change in disc size has only been investigated for a small number of very specific encounters. Several studies investigated the effect of the cluster environment on the sizes of planetary systems like our own solar system, based on a generalisation of information from this limited sample. We performed numerical simulations covering the wide parameter space typical of young star clusters, to test the validity of this approach. Here the sizes of discs after encounters are presented, based on a size definition that is comparable to the one used in observational studies. We find that, except for encounters between equal-mass stars, the usually applied estimates are insufficient. They tend to severely overestimate the remaining disc size. We show that the disc size after an encounter can be described by a relatively simple dependence on the periastron distance and the mass ratio of the encounter partners. This knowledge allows us, for example, to pin down the types of encounter possibly responsible for the structure of today's solar system. Appendix A is available in electronic form at http://www.aanda.org

  1. Immune cascades in human intervertebral disc: the pros and cons

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Zhen; Zhang, Ming; Zhao, Xu-Hong; Liu, Zhi-Heng; Gao, Yang; Samartzis, Dino; Wang, Hai-Qiang; Luo, Zhuo-Jing

    2013-01-01

    The unique structural hallmark of the intervertebral disc has made its central composition, the nucleus pulposus (NP), excluded from the immunologic tolerance. Consequently, the intervertebral disc is identified as an immune-privileged organ. Traditionally, local detrimental immune activities caused by NP at the lesion sites of the disc are noted as a significant factor contributing to disc degeneration. However, given the beneficial activities of immune cells in other immune-privileged sites on basis of current evidence, the degenerate disc might need the assistance of a subpopulation of immune cells to restore its structure and lessen inflammation. In addition, the beneficial impact of immune cells can be seen in the absorption of the herniated NP, which is an important factor causes the mechanical compression of nerve roots. Consequently, a modulated immune network in degenerate disc is essential for the restoration of this immune-privileged organ. Until now, the understandings of immune response in disc degeneration still rest on the harmful aspect. Further studies are needed to explore its beneficial influence. Accordingly, there are no absolutely the pros and cons in terms of immune reactions caused by NP. PMID:23696917

  2. Immune cascades in human intervertebral disc: the pros and cons.

    PubMed

    Sun, Zhen; Zhang, Ming; Zhao, Xu-Hong; Liu, Zhi-Heng; Gao, Yang; Samartzis, Dino; Wang, Hai-Qiang; Luo, Zhuo-Jing

    2013-01-01

    The unique structural hallmark of the intervertebral disc has made its central composition, the nucleus pulposus (NP), excluded from the immunologic tolerance. Consequently, the intervertebral disc is identified as an immune-privileged organ. Traditionally, local detrimental immune activities caused by NP at the lesion sites of the disc are noted as a significant factor contributing to disc degeneration. However, given the beneficial activities of immune cells in other immune-privileged sites on basis of current evidence, the degenerate disc might need the assistance of a subpopulation of immune cells to restore its structure and lessen inflammation. In addition, the beneficial impact of immune cells can be seen in the absorption of the herniated NP, which is an important factor causes the mechanical compression of nerve roots. Consequently, a modulated immune network in degenerate disc is essential for the restoration of this immune-privileged organ. Until now, the understandings of immune response in disc degeneration still rest on the harmful aspect. Further studies are needed to explore its beneficial influence. Accordingly, there are no absolutely the pros and cons in terms of immune reactions caused by NP.

  3. Disc cell therapies: critical issues.

    PubMed

    Tibiletti, Marta; Kregar Velikonja, Nevenka; Urban, Jill P G; Fairbank, Jeremy C T

    2014-06-01

    Disc cell therapies, in which cells are injected into the degenerate disc in order to regenerate the matrix and restore function, appear to be an attractive, minimally invasive method of treatment. Interest in this area has stimulated research into disc cell biology in particular. However, other important issues, some of which are discussed here, need to be considered if cell-based therapies are to be brought to the clinic. Firstly, a question which is barely addressed in the literature, is how to identify patients with 'degenerative disc disease' who would benefit from cell therapy. Pain not disc degeneration is the symptom which drives patients to the clinic. Even though there are associations between back pain and disc degeneration, many people with even severely degenerate discs, with herniated discs or with spinal stenosis, are pain-free. It is not possible using currently available techniques to identify whether disc repair or regeneration would remove symptoms or prevent symptoms from occurring in future. Moreover, the repair process in human discs is very slow (years) because of the low cell density which can be supported nutritionally even in healthy human discs. If repair is necessary for relief of symptoms, questions regarding quality of life and rehabilitation during this long process need consideration. Also, some serious technical issues remain. Finding appropriate cell sources and scaffolds have received most attention, but these are not the only issues determining the feasibility of the procedure. There are questions regarding the safety of implanting cells by injection through the annulus whether the nutrient supply to the disc is sufficient to support implanted cells and whether, if cells are able to survive, conditions in a degenerate human disc will allow them to repair the damaged tissue. If cell therapy for treatment of disc-related disorders is to enter the clinic as a routine treatment, investigations must examine the questions related to

  4. Application of artificial neural network in precise prediction of cement elements percentages based on the neutron activation analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eftekhari Zadeh, E.; Feghhi, S. A. H.; Roshani, G. H.; Rezaei, A.

    2016-05-01

    Due to variation of neutron energy spectrum in the target sample during the activation process and to peak overlapping caused by the Compton effect with gamma radiations emitted from activated elements, which results in background changes and consequently complex gamma spectrum during the measurement process, quantitative analysis will ultimately be problematic. Since there is no simple analytical correlation between peaks' counts with elements' concentrations, an artificial neural network for analyzing spectra can be a helpful tool. This work describes a study on the application of a neural network to determine the percentages of cement elements (mainly Ca, Si, Al, and Fe) using the neutron capture delayed gamma-ray spectra of the substance emitted by the activated nuclei as patterns which were simulated via the Monte Carlo N-particle transport code, version 2.7. The Radial Basis Function (RBF) network is developed with four specific peaks related to Ca, Si, Al and Fe, which were extracted as inputs. The proposed RBF model is developed and trained with MATLAB 7.8 software. To obtain the optimal RBF model, several structures have been constructed and tested. The comparison between simulated and predicted values using the proposed RBF model shows that there is a good agreement between them.

  5. Artificial gravity results in changes in frontal lobe activity measured by EEG tomography.

    PubMed

    Schneider, Stefan; Guardiera, Simon; Abel, Thomas; Carnahan, Heather; Strüder, Heiko K

    2009-08-18

    Mental and perceptual motor performance has been reported to be impaired during hypergravity. Current research has focused on physiological explanations (e.g., deficient proprioceptive feedback) and neglected psycho-physiological effects (e.g., arousal, emotion, cognitive engagement). This study aims at localising changes in brain cortical activity by using a distributed source localisation algorithm (sLORETA) to model the probable neural generators of changes in scalp voltage under hypergravity conditions. Brain cortical activity was measured by EEG before, during and after exposure to three time terrestrial gravity (3G(z)) on ten naive subjects aged 29+/-5 years. Changes in EEG activity were localised using standardised low resolution brain electromagnetic tomography (sLORETA) for alpha-1 [7.5-10 Hz], alpha-2 [10-12.5 Hz], beta-1 [12.5-18 Hz], beta-2 [18-35 Hz] and gamma [35-45 Hz] activities. Individual concentrations of blood cortisol and perceived psychological strain were related to changes in cortical current density. An increase in alpha-1 activity occurred in the right inferior frontal lobe, beta-1 activity was found to be increased in the limbic lobe during 3G(z). Post acceleration alpha-2 and beta-1 activities declined in frontal, temporal and limbic lobes. Changes in blood cortisol concentrations and perceived strain showed a clear relationship to changes in right sided frontal alpha-1 activity. We conclude that frontal activity during hypergravity may serve as a marker of anxiety. This puts a new light on the debate as to whether cognitive and sensorimotor impairments are attributable to primary physiological effects or secondary psychological effects of a hypergravity environment.

  6. Optimizing the conditions for in vitro maturation and artificial activation of sika deer (Cervus nippon hortulorum) oocytes.

    PubMed

    Yin, Y; Tang, L; Zhang, P; Kong, D; Wang, Z; Guan, J; Song, G; Tang, B; Li, Z

    2013-02-01

    With the goal of establishing experimental protocols for cloning sika deer, various conditions for in vitro maturation (IVM) and artificial activation of sika deer oocytes were examined. In vitro maturation was evaluated in seven different culture media. The highest rate of oocyte maturation was 75.4% in 10 μg/ml follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), 1 μg/ml LH, 0.2 mm cysteamine and 50 ng/ml epidermal growth factor (EGF) after 24 h of IVM. The efficiency after 24 h of IVM did not differ significantly (p > 0.05) from that observed after 20 h. Cysteamine (0.2 mm) significantly increased the maturation rates after 20 h (from 59.1% to 67.2%, p < 0.05) and after 24 h (from 63.2% to 71.6%, p < 0.05) of IVM. The IVM rates of oocytes collected during the oestrous season (75.4%) and the anoestrous season (23.3%) were significantly different at 24 h. The 20 μg/ml FSH, 2 μg/ml LH, 0.4 mm cysteamine and 100 ng/ml EGF significantly increased the maturation rates (from 23.3% to 54.2%, p < 0.01) at 24 h during the anoestrous season. For the activation experiments, the most effective method was chemical activation [ionomycin + 6-dimethylaminopurine (6-DMAP)], which promoted the development of sika deer oocytes to the blastocyst stage (32.4%). Our results indicate that in vitro matured sika deer oocytes are good candidates for parthenogenetic activation and that chemical treatment is needed for relatively efficient activation of the oocytes. These optimized conditions for IVM and parthenogenetic activation may be useful for efforts to restore populations of the endangered sika deer using the somatic cell nuclear transfer technique. © 2012 Blackwell Verlag GmbH.

  7. Characterization of the activation of small GTPases by their GEFs on membranes using artificial membrane tethering.

    PubMed

    Peurois, François; Veyron, Simon; Ferrandez, Yann; Ladid, Ilham; Benabdi, Sarah; Zeghouf, Mahel; Peyroche, Gérald; Cherfils, Jacqueline

    2017-03-23

    Active, GTP-bound small GTPases need to be attached to membranes by post-translational lipid modifications in order to process and propagate information in cells. However, generating and manipulating lipidated GTPases has remained difficult, which has limited our quantitative understanding of their activation by guanine nucleotide exchange factors (GEFs) and their termination by GTPase-activating proteins. Here, we replaced the lipid modification by a histidine tag in 11 full-length, human small GTPases belonging to the Arf, Rho and Rab families, which allowed to tether them to nickel-lipid-containing membranes and characterize the kinetics of their activation by GEFs. Remarkably, this strategy uncovered large effects of membranes on the efficiency and/or specificity in all systems studied. Notably, it recapitulated the release of autoinhibition of Arf1, Arf3, Arf4, Arf5 and Arf6 GTPases by membranes and revealed that all isoforms are efficiently activated by two GEFs with different regulatory regimes, ARNO and Brag2. It demonstrated that membranes stimulate the GEF activity of Trio toward RhoG by ∼30 fold and Rac1 by ∼10 fold, and uncovered a previously unknown broader specificity toward RhoA and Cdc42 that was undetectable in solution. Finally, it demonstrated that the exceptional affinity of the bacterial RabGEF DrrA for the phosphoinositide PI(4)P delimits the activation of Rab1 to the immediate vicinity of the membrane-bound GEF. Our study thus validates the histidine-tag strategy as a potent and simple means to mimic small GTPase lipidation, which opens a variety of applications to uncover regulations brought about by membranes. © 2017 The Author(s); published by Portland Press Limited on behalf of the Biochemical Society.

  8. Novel localized heating technique on centrifugal microfluidic disc with wireless temperature monitoring system.

    PubMed

    Joseph, Karunan; Ibrahim, Fatimah; Cho, Jongman

    2015-01-01

    Recent advances in the field of centrifugal microfluidic disc suggest the need for electrical interface in the disc to perform active biomedical assays. In this paper, we have demonstrated an active application powered by the energy harvested from the rotation of the centrifugal microfluidic disc. A novel integration of power harvester disc onto centrifugal microfluidic disc to perform localized heating technique is the main idea of our paper. The power harvester disc utilizing electromagnetic induction mechanism generates electrical energy from the rotation of the disc. This contributes to the heat generation by the embedded heater on the localized heating disc. The main characteristic observed in our experiment is the heating pattern in relative to the rotation of the disc. The heating pattern is monitored wirelessly with a digital temperature sensing system also embedded on the disc. Maximum temperature achieved is 82 °C at rotational speed of 2000 RPM. The technique proves to be effective for continuous heating without the need to stop the centrifugal motion of the disc.

  9. Evolution of gas in debris discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kral, Quentin; Wyatt, Mark; Pringle, Jim

    2015-12-01

    A non negligible quantity of gas has been discovered in an increasing number of debris disc systems. ALMA high sensitivity and high resolution is changing our perception of the gaseous component of debris discs as CO is discovered in systems where it should be rapidly photodissociated. It implies that there is a replenishment mechanism and that the observed gas is secondary. Past missions such as Herschel probed the atomic part of the gas through O I and C II emission lines. Gas science in debris discs is still in its infancy, and these new observations raise a handful of questions concerning the mechanisms to create the gas and about its evolution in the planetary system when it is released. The latter question will be addressed in this talk as a self-consistent gas evolution scenario is proposed and is compared to observations for the peculiar case of β Pictoris.Our model proposes that carbon and oxygen within debris discs are created due to photodissociation of CO which is itself created from the debris disc dust (due to grain-grain collisions or photodesorption). The evolution of the carbon atoms is modelled as viscous spreading, with viscosity parameterised using an α model. The temperature, ionisation fraction and population levels of carbon are followed with a PDR model called Cloudy, which is coupled to the dynamical viscous α model. Only carbon gets ionised due to its lower ionisation potential than oxygen. The carbon gas disc can end up with a high ionisation fraction due to strong FUV radiation field. A high ionisation fraction means that the magnetorotational instability (MRI) is very active, so that α is very high. Gas density profiles can be worked out for different input parameters such as the α value, the CO input rate, the location of the input and the incoming radiation field. Observability predictions can be made for future observations, and our model is tested on β Pictoris observations. This new gas evolution model fits the carbon and CO

  10. Radiofrequency stimulation of intervertebral discs.

    PubMed

    Rosen, Steven; Falco, Frank

    2003-10-01

    The etiology of discogenic pain is poorly understood. The most accepted theory has been that nociceptors in the outer one-third of the annulus fibrosis are responsible for transmitting pain secondary to internal disc disruptions. The concept of "neoneuralization" after disc injury has been disseminated. It has been noted that disc degeneration and injury are associated with ingrowth of neural fibers into the disc annulus. One mechanism of Intradiscal Electrodothermal Therapy (IDET) has been thought to be lesioning of these nociceptors. Five consecutive patients were studied using an intraannular electrode. The Radionics discTRODE was used. It was found impossible to selectively stimulate axial pain fibers using this system. Radicular stimulation was noted in all patients at all levels studied. The implication of these findings concerning the concept of neoneuralization, mechanism of IDET, and possible strategies to decrease discogenic pain are discussed.

  11. Imaginal disc regeneration takes flight.

    PubMed

    Hariharan, Iswar K; Serras, Florenci

    2017-04-01

    Drosophila imaginal discs, the larval precursors of adult structures such as the wing and leg, are capable of regenerating after damage. During the course of regeneration, discs can sometimes generate structures that are appropriate for a different type of disc, a phenomenon termed transdetermination. Until recently, these phenomena were studied by physically fragmenting discs and then transplanting them into the abdomens of adult female flies. This field has experienced a renaissance following the development of genetic ablation systems that can damage precisely defined regions of the disc without the need for surgery. Together with more traditional approaches, these newer methods have generated many novel insights into wound healing, the mechanisms that drive regenerative growth, plasticity during regeneration and systemic effects of tissue damage and regeneration.

  12. Tubulin dynamics during the cytoplasmic cohesiveness cycle in artificially activated sea urchin eggs.

    PubMed

    Coffe, G; Foucault, G; Raymond, M N; Pudles, J

    1983-12-01

    Sedimentation studies and [3H]colchicine-binding assays have demonstrated a relationship between the cytoplasmic cohesiveness cycles and the changes in tubulin organization in Paracentrotus lividus eggs activated by 2.5 mM procaine. The same amount of tubulin (20-25% of the total egg tubulin) is involved in these cyclic process and appears to undergo polymerization and depolymerization cycles. Electron microscopy studies reveal that the microtubules formed during these cytoplasmic cohesiveness cycles are under a particulate form which is sedimentable at low speed. Activation experiments carried out in the presence of cytochalasin B (CB) show that the increase in the cytoplasmic cohesiveness is highly reduced while tubulin polymerization and depolymerization cycles and pronuclear centration are not affected. Although tubulin or actin polymerization can be independently triggered in procaine-activated eggs, the increase in cytoplasmic cohesiveness requires the polymerization of both proteins. However, the cytoplasmic cohesiveness cycles appear to be regulated by tubulin polymerization and depolymerization cycles.

  13. Design and Analysis of Hammerhead Ribozyme Activity Against an Artificial Gene Target

    PubMed Central

    Carter, James; Nawtaisong, Pruksa; Balaraman, Velmurugan; Fraser, Malcolm J.

    2014-01-01

    In vitro cleavage assays are routinely conducted to properly assess the catalytic activity of hammerhead ribozymes (HHR) against target RNA molecules like the dengue virus RNA genomes. These experiments are performed for initial assessment of HHR catalysis in a cell-free system and have been simplified by the substitution of agarose gel electrophoresis for SDS-PAGE. Substituting mobility assays enables the analysis of ribozymes in a more rapid fashion without radioisotopes. Here we describe the in vitro transcription of an HHR and corresponding target from T7-promoted plasmids into RNA molecules leading to the analysis of HHR activity against the RNA target by in vitro cleavage assays. PMID:24318886

  14. Intraoral micro-identification discs.

    PubMed

    Hansen, R W

    1991-12-01

    Intraoral micro-identification discs have recently been utilized to provide a more permanent method of personal identification. A wafer of plastic or metal with a surface area of 2.5 to 5 mm2 and carrying identifying numbers and/or letters (indicia) is bonded to the buccal enamel surface of the posterior teeth. Personal identification can occur after the I.D. disc is identified and the indicia is read. Reading of photoreduced indicia requires the aid of a microscope subsequent to the removal of the microdisc. In situ reading of disc indicia is possible using low power handheld magnifiers if the size of the indicia approximates 0.3 mm. Computerization is an integral part of non-custom alpha/numeric type designs, but a custom disc carries a name, address, and other specific information unique to the manufacturer. The use of a computer improves access to the database and it decreases the amount of data placed on the disc. Microdisc bases may be fabricated using a mylar type plastic or they may be manufactured from a stainless steel blank. Plastic discs are constructed with an internal sandwich containing the photo-reduced indicia. Metal discs are marked with a photochemical etch or engraved with a computer driven YAG laser. Attachment of the disc to the enamel surface is accomplished by conventional etching and bonding techniques and are typically bonded to the buccal surface of the maxillary first permanent molar or the second primary molar. Clear composite bonding material covers the disc so that salivary contamination does not result in degradation of the indicia. Orthodontic style discs with a mesh back carry laser written information that may be cemented with conventional orthodontic bonding cement. Standardization of the indicia and overall design is considered to be an important aspect of patient and professional acceptance.

  15. In vivo administration of artificial antigen-presenting cells activates low-avidity T cells for treatment of cancer.

    PubMed

    Ugel, Stefano; Zoso, Alessia; De Santo, Carmela; Li, Yu; Marigo, Ilaria; Zanovello, Paola; Scarselli, Elisa; Cipriani, Barbara; Oelke, Mathias; Schneck, Jonathan P; Bronte, Vincenzo

    2009-12-15

    The development of effective antitumor immune responses is normally constrained by low-avidity, tumor-specific CTLs that are unable to eradicate the tumor. Strategies to rescue antitumor activity of low-avidity melanoma-specific CTLs in vivo may improve immunotherapy efficacy. To boost the in vivo effectiveness of low-avidity CTLs, we immunized mice bearing lung melanoma metastases with artificial antigen-presenting cells (aAPC), made by covalently coupling (pep)MHC-Ig dimers and B7.1-Ig molecules to magnetic beads. aAPC treatment induced significant tumor reduction in a mouse telomerase antigen system, and complete tumor eradication in a mouse TRP-2 antigen system, when low-avidity CTLs specific for these antigens were adoptively transferred. In addition, in an in vivo treatment model of subcutaneous melanoma, aAPC injection also augmented the activity of adoptively transferred CTLs and significantly delayed tumor growth. In vivo tumor clearance due to aAPC administration correlated with in situ proliferation of the transferred CTL. In vitro studies showed that aAPC effectively stimulated cytokine release, enhanced CTL-mediated lysis, and TCR downregulation in low-avidity CTLs. Therefore, in vivo aAPC administration represents a potentially novel approach to improve cancer immunotherapy.

  16. Application of artificial neural networks for the soil moisture retrieval from active and passive microwave spaceborne sensors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Santi, Emanuele; Paloscia, Simonetta; Pettinato, Simone; Fontanelli, Giacomo

    2016-06-01

    Among the algorithms used for the retrieval of SMC from microwave sensors (both active, such as Synthetic Aperture Radar-SAR, and passive, radiometers), the artificial neural networks (ANN) represent the best compromise between accuracy and computation speed. ANN based algorithms have been developed at IFAC, and adapted to several radar and radiometric satellite sensors, in order to generate SMC products at a resolution varying from hundreds of meters to tens of kilometers according to the spatial scale of each sensor. These algorithms, which are based on the ANN techniques for inverting theoretical and semi-empirical models, have been adapted to the C- to Ka- band acquisitions from spaceborne radiometers (AMSR-E/AMSR2), SAR (Envisat/ASAR, Cosmo-SkyMed) and real aperture radar (MetOP ASCAT). Large datasets of co-located satellite acquisitions and direct SMC measurements on several test sites worldwide have been used along with simulations derived from forward electromagnetic models for setting up, training and validating these algorithms. An overall quality assessment of the obtained results in terms of accuracy and computational cost was carried out, and the main advantages and limitations for an operational use of these algorithms were evaluated. This technique allowed the retrieval of SMC from both active and passive satellite systems, with accuracy values of about 0.05 m3/m3 of SMC or better, thus making these applications compliant with the usual accuracy requirements for SMC products from space.

  17. Removal of iron and manganese using granular activated carbon and zeolite in artificial barrier of riverbank filtration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ismail, Abustan; Harmuni, Halim; Mohd, Remy Rozainy M. A. Z.

    2017-04-01

    Iron and Manganese was examined from riverbank filtration (RBF) and river water in Sungai Kerian, Lubok Buntar, Serdang Kedah. Water from the RBF was influenced by geochemical and hydro chemical processes in the aquifer that made concentrations of iron (Fe), and manganese (Mn) high, and exceeded the standard values set by the Malaysia Ministry of Health. Therefore, in order to overcome the problem, the artificial barrier was proposed to improve the performance of the RBF. In this study, the capability and performance of granular activated carbon, zeolite and sand were investigated in this research. The effects of dosage, shaking speed, pH and contact time on removal of iron and manganese were studied to determine the best performance. For the removal of iron using granular activated carbon (GAC) and zeolite, the optimum contact time was at 2 hours with 200rpm shaking speed with 5g and 10g at pH 5 with percentage removal of iron was 87.81% and 83.20% respectively. The removal of manganese and zeolite arose sharply in 75 minutes with 90.21% removal, with 100rpm shaking speed. The GAC gave the best performance with 99.39% removal of manganese. The highest removal of manganese was achieved when the adsorbent dosage increased to 10g with shaking speed of 200rpm.

  18. Three-dimentional simulation of flow-induced platelet activation in artificial heart valves

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hedayat, Mohammadali; Asgharzadeh, Hafez; Borazjani, Iman

    2015-11-01

    Since the advent of heart valve, several valve types such as mechanical and bio-prosthetic valves have been designed. Mechanical Heart Valves (MHV) are durable but suffer from thromboembolic complications that caused by shear-induced platelet activation near the valve region. Bio-prosthetic Heart Valves (BHV) are known for better hemodynamics. However, they usually have a short average life time. Realistic simulations of heart valves in combination with platelet activation models can lead to a better understanding of the potential risk of thrombus formation in such devices. In this study, an Eulerian approach is developed to calculate the platelet activation in three-dimensional simulations of flow through MHV and BHV using a parallel overset-curvilinear immersed boundary technique. A curvilinear body-fitted grid is used for the flow simulation through the anatomic aorta, while the sharp-interface immersed boundary method is used for simulation of the Left Ventricle (LV) with prescribed motion. In addition, dynamics of valves were calculated numerically using under-relaxed strong-coupling algorithm. Finally, the platelet activation results for BMV and MHV are compared with each other.

  19. Apoferritin-CeO2 nano-truffle that has excellent artificial redox enzyme activity.

    PubMed

    Liu, Xiangyou; Wei, Wei; Yuan, Quan; Zhang, Xin; Li, Ning; Du, Yuguang; Ma, Guanghui; Yan, Chunhua; Ma, Ding

    2012-03-28

    4.5 nm nanoceria particles are successfully encapsulated into the apoferritin cavity via a dissociation-reconstruction route. The apoferritin coating not only improves the biocompatibility and changes the cellular uptake route of nanoceria, but also manipulates the electron localization at the surface of the nanoparticle thereby ameliorating the ROS-scavenging activity.

  20. Evolution of an accretion disc in binary black hole systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kimura, Shigeo S.; Takahashi, Sanemichi Z.; Toma, Kenji

    2017-03-01

    We investigate evolution of an accretion disc in binary black hole (BBH) systems and possible electromagnetic counterparts of the gravitational waves from mergers of BBHs. Perna et al. proposed a novel evolutionary scenario of an accretion disc in BBHs in which a disc eventually becomes 'dead', i.e. the magnetorotational instability (MRI) becomes inactive. In their scenario, the dead disc survives until a few seconds before the merger event. We improve the dead disc model and propose another scenario, taking account of effects of the tidal torque from the companion and the critical ionization degree for MRI activation more carefully. We find that the mass of the dead disc is much lower than that in the Perna's scenario. When the binary separation sufficiently becomes small, the mass inflow induced by the tidal torque reactivates MRI, restarting mass accretion on to the black hole. We also find that this disc 'revival' happens more than thousands of years before the merger. The mass accretion induced by the tidal torque increases as the separation decreases, and a relativistic jet could be launched before the merger. The emissions from these jets are too faint compared to gamma-ray bursts, but detectable if the merger events happen within ≲10 Mpc or if the masses of the black holes are as massive as ∼105 M⊙.

  1. Disc-based microarrays: principles and analytical applications.

    PubMed

    Morais, Sergi; Puchades, Rosa; Maquieira, Ángel

    2016-07-01

    The idea of using disk drives to monitor molecular biorecognition events on regular optical discs has received considerable attention during the last decade. CDs, DVDs, Blu-ray discs and other new optical discs are universal and versatile supports with the potential for development of protein and DNA microarrays. Besides, standard disk drives incorporated in personal computers can be used as compact and affordable optical reading devices. Consequently, a CD technology, resulting from the audio-video industry, has been used to develop analytical applications in health care, environmental monitoring, food safety and quality assurance. The review presents and critically evaluates the current state of the art of disc-based microarrays with illustrative examples, including past, current and future developments. Special mention is made of the analytical developments that use either chemically activated or raw standard CDs where proteins, oligonucleotides, peptides, haptens or other biological probes are immobilized. The discs are also used to perform the assays and must maintain their readability with standard optical drives. The concept and principle of evolving disc-based microarrays and the evolution of disk drives as optical detectors are also described. The review concludes with the most relevant uses ordered chronologically to provide an overview of the progress of CD technology applications in the life sciences. Also, it provides a selection of important references to the current literature. Graphical Abstract High density disc-based microarrays.

  2. On the vertical-shear instability in astrophysical discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barker, A. J.; Latter, H. N.

    2015-06-01

    We explore the linear stability of astrophysical discs exhibiting vertical shear, which arises when there is a radial variation in the temperature or entropy. Such discs are subject to a `vertical-shear instability', which recent non-linear simulations have shown to drive hydrodynamic activity in the MRI-stable regions of protoplanetary discs. We first revisit locally isothermal discs using the quasi-global reduced model derived by Nelson et al. This analysis is then extended to global axisymmetric perturbations in a cylindrical domain. We also derive and study a reduced model describing discs with power-law radial entropy profiles (`locally polytropic discs'), which are somewhat more realistic in that they possess physical (as opposed to numerical) surfaces. The fastest growing modes have very short wavelengths and are localized at the disc surfaces (if present), where the vertical shear is maximal. An additional class of modestly growing vertically global body modes is excited, corresponding to destabilized classical inertial waves (`r modes'). We discuss the properties of both types of modes, and stress that those that grow fastest occur on the shortest available length-scales (determined either by the numerical grid or the physical viscous length). This ill-posedness makes simulations of the instability difficult to interpret. We end with some brief speculation on the non-linear saturation and resulting angular momentum transport.

  3. Modification of soil microbial activity and several hydrolases in a forest soil artificially contaminated with copper

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bellas, Rosa; Leirós, Mā Carmen; Gil-Sotres, Fernando; Trasar-Cepeda, Carmen

    2010-05-01

    Soils have long been exposed to the adverse effects of human activities, which negatively affect soil biological activity. As a result of their functions and ubiquitous presence microorganisms can serve as environmental indicators of soil pollution. Some features of soil microorganisms, such as the microbial biomass size, respiration rate, and enzyme activity are often used as bioindicators of the ecotoxicity of heavy metals. Although copper is essential for microorganisms, excessive concentrations have a negative influence on processes mediated by microorganisms. In this study we measured the response of some microbial indicators to Cu pollution in a forest soil, with the aim of evaluating their potential for predicting Cu contamination. Samples of an Ah horizon from a forest soil under oakwood vegetation (Quercus robur L.) were contaminated in the laboratory with copper added at different doses (0, 120, 360, 1080 and 3240 mg kg-1) as CuCl2×2H2O. The soil samples were kept for 7 days at 25 °C and at a moisture content corresponding to the water holding capacity, and thereafter were analysed for carbon and nitrogen mineralization capacity, microbial biomass C, seed germination and root elongation tests, and for urease, phosphomonoesterase, catalase and ß-glucosidase activities. In addition, carbon mineralization kinetics were studied, by plotting the log of residual C against incubation time, and the metabolic coefficient, qCO2, was estimated. Both organic carbon and nitrogen mineralization were lower in polluted samples, with the greatest decrease observed in the sample contaminated with 1080 mg kg-1. In all samples carbon mineralization followed first order kinetics; the C mineralization constant was lower in contaminated than in uncontaminated samples and, in general, decreased with increasing doses of copper. Moreover, it appears that copper contamination not only reduced the N mineralization capacity, but also modified the N mineralization process, since in

  4. Comparison of ripening processes in intact tomato fruit and excised pericarp discs.

    PubMed

    Campbell, A D; Huysamer, M; Stotz, H U; Greve, L C; Labavitch, J M

    1990-12-01

    Physiological processes characteristic of ripening in tissues of intact tomato fruit (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill.) were examined in excised pericarp discs. Pericarp discs were prepared from mature-green tomato fruit and stored in 24-well culture plates, in which individual discs could be monitored for color change, ethylene biosynthesis, and respiration, and selected for cell wall analysis. Within the context of these preparation and handling procedures, most whole fruit ripening processes were maintained in pericarp discs. Pericarp discs and matched intact fruit passed through the same skin color stages at similar rates, as expressed in the L(*)a(*)b(*) color space, changing from green (a(*) < -5) to red (a(*) > 15) in about 6 days. Individual tissues of the pericarp discs changed color in the same sequence seen in intact fruit (exocarp, endocarp, then vascular parenchyma). Discs from different areas changed in the same spatial sequence seen in intact fruit (bottom, middle, top). Pericarp discs exhibited climacteric increases in ethylene biosynthesis and CO(2) production comparable with those seen in intact fruit, but these were more tightly linked to rate of color change, reaching a peak around a(*) = 5. Tomato pericarp discs decreased in firmness as color changed. Cell wall carbohydrate composition changed with color as in intact fruit: the quantity of water-soluble pectin eluted from the starch-free alcohol insoluble substances steadily increased and more tightly bound, water-insoluble, pectin decreased in inverse relationship. The cell wall content of the neutral sugars arabinose, rhamnose, and galactose steadily decreased as color changed. The extractable activity of specific cell wall hydrolases changed as in intact fruit: polygalacturonase activity, not detectable in green discs (a(*) = -5), appeared as discs turned yellow-red (a(*) = 5), and increased another eight-fold as discs became full red (a(*) value +20). Carboxymethyl-cellulase activity, low in

  5. A Modified Active Appearance Model Based on an Adaptive Artificial Bee Colony

    PubMed Central

    Othman, Zulaiha Ali

    2014-01-01

    Active appearance model (AAM) is one of the most popular model-based approaches that have been extensively used to extract features by highly accurate modeling of human faces under various physical and environmental circumstances. However, in such active appearance model, fitting the model with original image is a challenging task. State of the art shows that optimization method is applicable to resolve this problem. However, another common problem is applying optimization. Hence, in this paper we propose an AAM based face recognition technique, which is capable of resolving the fitting problem of AAM by introducing a new adaptive ABC algorithm. The adaptation increases the efficiency of fitting as against the conventional ABC algorithm. We have used three datasets: CASIA dataset, property 2.5D face dataset, and UBIRIS v1 images dataset in our experiments. The results have revealed that the proposed face recognition technique has performed effectively, in terms of accuracy of face recognition. PMID:25165748

  6. A modified active appearance model based on an adaptive artificial bee colony.

    PubMed

    Abdulameer, Mohammed Hasan; Sheikh Abdullah, Siti Norul Huda; Othman, Zulaiha Ali

    2014-01-01

    Active appearance model (AAM) is one of the most popular model-based approaches that have been extensively used to extract features by highly accurate modeling of human faces under various physical and environmental circumstances. However, in such active appearance model, fitting the model with original image is a challenging task. State of the art shows that optimization method is applicable to resolve this problem. However, another common problem is applying optimization. Hence, in this paper we propose an AAM based face recognition technique, which is capable of resolving the fitting problem of AAM by introducing a new adaptive ABC algorithm. The adaptation increases the efficiency of fitting as against the conventional ABC algorithm. We have used three datasets: CASIA dataset, property 2.5D face dataset, and UBIRIS v1 images dataset in our experiments. The results have revealed that the proposed face recognition technique has performed effectively, in terms of accuracy of face recognition.

  7. A comparison of timed artificial insemination and automated activity monitoring with hormone intervention in 3 commercial dairy herds.

    PubMed

    Dolecheck, K A; Silvia, W J; Heersche, G; Wood, C L; McQuerry, K J; Bewley, J M

    2016-02-01

    The objective of this study was to compare the reproductive performance of cows inseminated based on automated activity monitoring with hormone intervention (AAM) to cows from the same herds inseminated using only an intensive timed artificial insemination (TAI) program. Cows (n=523) from 3 commercial dairy herds participated in this study. To be considered eligible for participation, cows must have been classified with a body condition score of at least 2.50, but no more than 3.50, passed a reproductive tract examination, and experienced no incidences of clinical, recorded metabolic diseases in the current lactation. Within each herd, cows were balanced for parity and predicted milk yield, then randomly assigned to 1 of 2 treatments: TAI or AAM. Cows assigned to the TAI group were subjected to an ovulation synchronization protocol consisting of presynchronization, Ovsynch, and Resynch for up to 3 inseminations. Cows assigned to the AAM treatment were fitted with a leg-mounted accelerometer (AfiAct Pedometer Plus, Afimilk, Kibbutz Afikim, Israel) at least 10 d before the end of the herd voluntary waiting period (VWP). Cows in the AAM treatment were inseminated at times indicated by the automated alert system for up to 90 d after the VWP. If an open cow experienced no AAM alert for a 39±7-d period (beginning at the end of the VWP), hormone intervention in the form of a single injection of either PGF2α or GnRH (no TAI) was permitted as directed by the herd veterinarian. Subsequent to hormone intervention, cows were inseminated when alerted in estrus by the AAM system. Pregnancy was diagnosed by ultrasound 33 to 46 d after insemination. Pregnancy loss was determined via a second ultrasound after 60 d pregnant. Timed artificial insemination cows experienced a median 11.0 d shorter time to first service. Automated activity-monitored cows experienced a median 17.5-d shorter service interval. No treatment difference in probability of pregnancy to first AI, probability

  8. [Evaluation of systemic activity of the brain by means of an artificial intelligence model].

    PubMed

    Umriukhin, E A

    2001-01-01

    The model based on the systems representation of informational brain mechanisms reproduces the principal stages of intellectual activities: afferent synthesis, decision making, acceptor of results of actions. The imitation of behavior of subjects in the special experimental environment with the model allows quantitative estimation of parameters of systemic stages in normal subjects of different ages and subjects with different brain dysfunctions, such as arteriosclerosis, schizophrenia, etc.

  9. Cervical Total Disc Arthroplasty

    PubMed Central

    Basho, Rahul; Hood, Kenneth A.

    2012-01-01

    Symptomatic adjacent segment degeneration of the cervical spine remains problematic for patients and surgeons alike. Despite advances in surgical techniques and instrumentation, the solution remains elusive. Spurred by the success of total joint arthroplasty in hips and knees, surgeons and industry have turned to motion preservation devices in the cervical spine. By preserving motion at the diseased level, the hope is that adjacent segment degeneration can be prevented. Multiple cervical disc arthroplasty devices have come onto the market and completed Food and Drug Administration Investigational Device Exemption trials. Though some of the early results demonstrate equivalency of arthroplasty to fusion, compelling evidence of benefits in terms of symptomatic adjacent segment degeneration are lacking. In addition, non-industry-sponsored studies indicate that these devices are equivalent to fusion in terms of adjacent segment degeneration. Longer-term studies will eventually provide the definitive answer. PMID:24353955

  10. Interleukin-6 and interleukin-6 receptor expression, localization, and involvement in pain-sensing neuron activation in a mouse intervertebral disc injury model.

    PubMed

    Sainoh, Takeshi; Orita, Sumihisa; Miyagi, Masayuki; Sakuma, Yoshihiro; Yamauchi, Kazuyo; Suzuki, Miyako; Kubota, Go; Oikawa, Yasuhiro; Inage, Kazuhide; Sato, Jun; Fujimoto, Kazuki; Shiga, Yasuhiro; Inoue, Gen; Aoki, Yasuchika; Takahashi, Kazuhisa; Ohtori, Seiji

    2015-10-01

    The pathological mechanism of intractable low back pain is unclear. However, intervertebral disc (IVD) degeneration is a primary cause of low back pain, and pain-related mediators, such as interleukin-6 (IL-6), have been correlated with discogenic pain. The objective of this study is to elucidate the mechanism of local IL-6 and IL-6 receptor (IL-6R) expression after IVD injury as well as determine the involvement of IL-6/IL-6 signaling in discogenic pain. To do this, quantitative and immunohistological analyses in a mouse model of IVD injury were performed. Firstly, we measured the local expression levels of IL-6 and IL-6R in IVDs by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Secondly, we immunohistochemically confirmed their localization in injured IVDs. Lastly, we evaluated the effects of intradiscal injection of an IL-6 inhibitor by evaluating pain-related protein, calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP), expression in dorsal root ganglia (DRG) neurons that innervate IVDs. Injured IVDs showed increased production of IL-6 and IL-6R. IL-6 and IL-6R expression in the injured IVD were predominantly localized in the annulus fibrosus and endplate, and intradiscal injection of the IL-6 inhibitor suppressed CGRP expression in the DRG neurons. These results show that IL-6 and IL-6R expression levels are responsive to IVD injury and that inhibition of IL-6/IL-6R signaling may be a promising analgesic treatment for degenerative disc diseases.

  11. Adaptation to New Microphones Using Artificial Neural Networks With Trainable Activation Functions.

    PubMed

    Siniscalchi, Sabato Marco; Salerno, Valerio Mario

    2016-04-14

    Model adaptation is a key technique that enables a modern automatic speech recognition (ASR) system to adjust its parameters, using a small amount of enrolment data, to the nuances in the speech spectrum due to microphone mismatch in the training and test data. In this brief, we investigate four different adaptation schemes for connectionist (also known as hybrid) ASR systems that learn microphone-specific hidden unit contributions, given some adaptation material. This solution is made possible adopting one of the following schemes: 1) the use of Hermite activation functions; 2) the introduction of bias and slope parameters in the sigmoid activation functions; 3) the injection of an amplitude parameter specific for each sigmoid unit; or 4) the combination of 2) and 3). Such a simple yet effective solution allows the adapted model to be stored in a small-sized storage space, a highly desirable property of adaptation algorithms for deep neural networks that are suitable for large-scale online deployment. Experimental results indicate that the investigated approaches reduce word error rates on the standard Spoke 6 task of the Wall Street Journal corpus compared with unadapted ASR systems. Moreover, the proposed adaptation schemes all perform better than simple multicondition training and comparable favorably against conventional linear regression-based approaches while using up to 15 orders of magnitude fewer parameters. The proposed adaptation strategies are also effective when a single adaptation sentence is available.

  12. Central Spindle Self-Organization and Cytokinesis in Artificially Activated Sea Urchin Eggs.

    PubMed

    Henson, John H; Buckley, Mary W; Yeterian, Mesrob; Weeks, Richard M; Simerly, Calvin R; Shuster, Charles B

    2016-04-01

    The ability of microtubules of the mitotic apparatus to control the positioning and initiation of the cleavage furrow during cytokinesis was first established from studies on early echinoderm embryos. However, the identity of the microtubule population that imparts cytokinetic signaling is unclear. The two main--and not necessarily mutually exclusive--candidates are the central spindle and the astral rays. In the present study, we examined cytokinesis in ammonia-activated sea urchin eggs, which lack paternally derived centrosomes and undergo mitosis mediated by unusual anastral, bipolar mini-spindles. Live cell imaging and immunolabeling for microtubules and the centralspindlin constituent and kinesin-related protein, MKLP1, demonstrated that furrowing in ammonia-activated eggs was associated with aligned arrays of centralspindlin-linked, opposed bundles of antiparallel microtubules. These autonomous, zipper-like arrays were not associated with a mitotic apparatus, but did possess characteristics similar to the central spindle region of control, fertilized embryos. Our results highlight the self-organizing nature of the central spindle region and its ability to induce cytokinesis-like furrowing, even in the absence of a complete mitotic apparatus. © 2016 Marine Biological Laboratory.

  13. Formation and dynamics of an artificial ring of dust for active orbital debris removal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Crabtree, Chris; Zedd, Michael; Ganguli, Gurudas; Rudakov, Leonid; Healy, Liam

    Recently we suggested a dust-based active debris removal technique to selectively remove small untrackable debris that occupies a very large volume around the Earth. For designing a working system an accurate knowledge of the dynamics of the released dust in orbit is necessary. In this paper we numerically examine the dynamics of non-interacting spherical tungsten dust grains of diameter between 30-60 microns released in a polar low-Earth orbit. We analyze different perturbations due to nonuniform gravity, solar radiation pressure, solar cycles as well as solar and lunar gravity, and dust charging effects, etc., and determine a set of forces adequate to describe the dynamics over the life of the dust in orbit (˜ 12- 15 years). With the resulting force model we analyze the orbits of many dust grains to determine the formation and geometry of the ring. We qualitatively examine the effects of the calculated geometry and dynamics of the dust cloud on the efficiency of the Active Debris Removal scheme.

  14. Double-disc gate valve

    DOEpatents

    Wheatley, Seth J.

    1979-01-01

    This invention relates to an improvement in a conventional double-disc gate valve having a vertically movable gate assembly including a wedge, spreaders slidably engaged therewtih, a valve disc carried by the spreaders. When the gate assembly is lowered to a selected point in the valve casing, the valve discs are moved transversely outward to close inlet and outlet ports in the casing. The valve includes hold-down means for guiding the disc-and-spreader assemblies as they are moved transversely outward and inward. If such valves are operated at relatively high differential pressures, they sometimes jam during opening. Such jamming has been a problem for many years in gate valves used in gaseous diffusion plants for the separtion of uranium isotopes. The invention is based on the finding that the above-mentioned jamming results when the outlet disc tilts about its horizontal axis in a certain way during opening of the valve. In accordance with the invention, tilting of the outlet disc is maintained at a tolerable value by providing the disc with a rigid downwardly extending member and by providing the casing with a stop for limiting inward arcuate movement of the member to a preselected value during opening of the valve.

  15. Comparison of animal discs used in disc research to human lumbar disc: torsion mechanics and collagen content.

    PubMed

    Showalter, Brent L; Beckstein, Jesse C; Martin, John T; Beattie, Elizabeth E; Espinoza Orías, Alejandro A; Schaer, Thomas P; Vresilovic, Edward J; Elliott, Dawn M

    2012-07-01

    Experimental measurement and normalization of in vitro disc torsion mechanics and collagen content for several animal species used in intervertebral disc research and comparing these with the human disc. To aid in the selection of appropriate animal models for disc research by measuring torsional mechanical properties and collagen content. There is lack of data and variability in testing protocols for comparing animal and human disc torsion mechanics and collagen content. Intervertebral disc torsion mechanics were measured and normalized by disc height and polar moment of inertia for 11 disc types in 8 mammalian species: the calf, pig, baboon, goat, sheep, rabbit, rat, and mouse lumbar discs, and cow, rat, and mouse caudal discs. Collagen content was measured and normalized by dry weight for the same discs except the rat and the mouse. Collagen fiber stretch in torsion was calculated using an analytical model. Measured torsion parameters varied by several orders of magnitude across the different species. After geometric normalization, only the sheep and pig discs were statistically different from human discs. Fiber stretch was found to be highly dependent on the assumed initial fiber angle. The collagen content of the discs was similar, especially in the outer annulus where only the calf and goat discs were statistically different from human. Disc collagen content did not correlate with torsion mechanics. Disc torsion mechanics are comparable with human lumbar discs in 9 of 11 disc types after normalization by geometry. The normalized torsion mechanics and collagen content of the multiple animal discs presented are useful for selecting and interpreting results for animal disc models. Structural organization of the fiber angle may explain the differences that were noted between species after geometric normalization.

  16. Stepwise illustration of teeth-fixation semi-constrained cervical disc arthroplasty.

    PubMed

    Chang, Chih-Chang; Wu, Jau-Ching; Chang, Peng-Yuan; Yeh, Mei-Yin; Kuo, Yi-Hsuan; Fay, Li-Yu; Tu, Tsung-Hsi; Huang, Wen-Cheng; Cheng, Henrich

    2017-01-01

    There are many kinds of artificial discs available for cervical disc arthroplasty (CDA), with various designs of fixation and articulation mechanisms. Each of these designs has different features and theoretically fits most optimally in selected types of patients. However, there has been insufficient literature to guide individualized selection among these CDA devices. Since CDA aims to restore the joint function rather than arthrodesis, tailor-made size, shape, and mechanical properties should be taken into account for each candidate's target disc. Despite several large-scale prospective randomized control trials that have demonstrated the effectiveness and durability of CDA for up to 8 years, none of them involved more than one kind of artificial disc. In this video the authors present detailed steps and technical aspects of the newly introduced ProDisc-C Vivo (DePuy Synthes Spine), which has the same ball-and-socket design for controlled, predictable motion as the ProDisc-C. The newly derived teeth fixation provides high primary stability and multilevel capability by avoidance of previous keel-related limitations and complications (e.g., split vertebral fracture). Please note that the ProDisc-C Vivo is currently not available on the US market. The authors present the case of a 53-year-old woman who had symptoms of both radiculopathy and myelopathy caused by a large, calcified disc herniation at C4-5. There was no improvement after 4 months of medical treatment and rehabilitation. A single-level CDA was successfully performed with the ProDisc-C Vivo, and her symptoms were completely ameliorated afterward. The follow-up images demonstrated preservation of motion at the indexed level. The video can be found here: https://youtu.be/4DSES1xgvQU .

  17. Selection of molecular descriptors with artificial intelligence for the understanding of HIV-1 protease peptidomimetic inhibitors-activity.

    PubMed

    Sirois, S; Tsoukas, C M; Chou, Kuo-Chen; Wei, Dongqing; Boucher, C; Hatzakis, G E

    2005-03-01

    Quantitative Structure Activity Relationship (QSAR) techniques are used routinely by computational chemists in drug discovery and development to analyze datasets of compounds. Quantitative numerical methods like Partial Least Squares (PLS) and Artificial Neural Networks (ANN) have been used on QSAR to establish correlations between molecular properties and bioactivity. However, ANN may be advantageous over PLS because it considers the interrelations of the modeled variables. This study focused on the HIV-1 Protease (HIV-1 Pr) inhibitors belonging to the peptidomimetic class of compounds. The main objective was to select molecular descriptors with the best predictive value for antiviral potency (Ki). PLS and ANN were used to predict Ki activity of HIV-1 Pr inhibitors and the results were compared. To address the issue of dimensionality reduction, Genetic Algorithms (GA) were used for variable selection and their performance was compared against that of ANN. Finally, the structure of the optimum ANN achieving the highest Pearson's-R coefficient was determined. On the basis of Pearson's-R, PLS and ANN were compared to determine which exhibits maximum performance. Training and validation of models was performed on 15 random split sets of the master dataset consisted of 231 compounds. For each compound 192 molecular descriptors were considered. The molecular structure and constant of inhibition (Ki) were selected from the NIAID database. Study findings suggested that non-covalent interactions such as hydrophobicity, shape and hydrogen bonding describe well the antiviral activity of the HIV-1 Pr compounds. The significance of lipophilicity and relationship to HIV-1 associated hyperlipidemia and lipodystrophy syndrome warrant further investigation.

  18. The Influence of Artificially Introduced N-Glycosylation Sites on the In Vitro Activity of Xenopus laevis Erythropoietin

    PubMed Central

    Nagasawa, Kazumichi; Meguro, Mizue; Sato, Kei; Tanizaki, Yuta; Nogawa-Kosaka, Nami; Kato, Takashi

    2015-01-01

    Erythropoietin (EPO), the primary regulator of erythropoiesis, is a heavily glycosylated protein found in humans and several other mammals. Intriguingly, we have previously found that EPO in Xenopus laevis (xlEPO) has no N-glycosylation sites, and cross-reacts with the human EPO (huEPO) receptor despite low homology with huEPO. In this study, we introduced N-glycosylation sites into wild-type xlEPO at the positions homologous to those in huEPO, and tested whether the glycosylated mutein retained its biological activity. Seven xlEPO muteins, containing 1–3 additional N-linked carbohydrates at positions 24, 38, and/or 83, were expressed in COS-1 cells. The muteins exhibited lower secretion efficiency, higher hydrophilicity, and stronger acidic properties than the wild type. All muteins stimulated the proliferation of both cell lines, xlEPO receptor-expressing xlEPOR-FDC/P2 cells and huEPO receptor-expressing UT-7/EPO cells, in a dose-dependent manner. Thus, the muteins retained their in vitro biological activities. The maximum effect on xlEPOR-FDC/P2 proliferation was decreased by the addition of N-linked carbohydrates, but that on UT-7/EPO proliferation was not changed, indicating that the muteins act as partial agonists to the xlEPO receptor, and near-full agonists to the huEPO receptor. Hence, the EPO-EPOR binding site in X. laevis locates the distal region of artificially introduced three N-glycosylation sites, demonstrating that the vital conformation to exert biological activity is conserved between humans and X. laevis, despite the low similarity in primary structures of EPO and EPOR. PMID:25898205

  19. Artificial neural networks to predict 3D spinal posture in reaching and lifting activities; Applications in biomechanical models.

    PubMed

    Gholipour, A; Arjmand, N

    2016-09-06

    Spinal posture is a crucial input in biomechanical models and an essential factor in ergonomics investigations to evaluate risk of low back injury. In vivo measurement of spinal posture through the common motion capture techniques is limited to equipped laboratories and thus impractical for workplace applications. Posture prediction models are therefore considered indispensable tools. This study aims to investigate the capability of artificial neural networks (ANNs) in predicting the three-dimensional posture of the spine (S1, T12 and T1 orientations) in various activities. Two ANNs were trained and tested using measurements from spinal postures of 40 male subjects by an inertial tracking device in various static reaching and lifting (of 5kg) activities. Inputs of each ANN were position of the hand load and body height, while outputs were rotations of the three foregoing segments relative to their initial orientation in the neutral upright posture. Effect of posture prediction errors on the estimated spinal loads in symmetric reaching activities was also investigated using a biomechanical model. Results indicated that both trained ANNs could generate outputs (three-dimensional orientations of the segments) from novel sets of inputs that were not included in the training processes (root-mean-squared-error (RMSE)<11° and coefficient-of-determination (R(2))>0.95). A graphic user interface was designed and made available to facilitate use of the ANNs. The difference between the mean of each measured angle in a reaching task and the corresponding angle in a lifting task remained smaller than 8°. Spinal loads estimated by the biomechanical model based on the predicted postures were on average different by < 12% from those estimated based on the exact measured postures (RMSE=173 and 35N for the L5-S1 compression and shear loads, respectively).

  20. Active vibration control of flexible cantilever plates using piezoelectric materials and artificial neural networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abdeljaber, Osama; Avci, Onur; Inman, Daniel J.

    2016-02-01

    The study presented in this paper introduces a new intelligent methodology to mitigate the vibration response of flexible cantilever plates. The use of the piezoelectric sensor/actuator pairs for active control of plates is discussed. An intelligent neural network based controller is designed to control the optimal voltage applied on the piezoelectric patches. The control technique utilizes a neurocontroller along with a Kalman Filter to compute the appropriate actuator command. The neurocontroller is trained based on an algorithm that incorporates a set of emulator neural networks which are also trained to predict the future response of the cantilever plate. Then, the neurocontroller is evaluated by comparing the uncontrolled and controlled responses under several types of dynamic excitations. It is observed that the neurocontroller reduced the vibration response of the flexible cantilever plate significantly; the results demonstrated the success and robustness of the neurocontroller independent of the type and distribution of the excitation force.

  1. Highly active β-xylosidases of glycoside hydrolase family 43 operating on natural and artificial substrates.

    PubMed

    Jordan, Douglas B; Wagschal, Kurt; Grigorescu, Arabela A; Braker, Jay D

    2013-05-01

    The hemicellulose xylan constitutes a major portion of plant biomass, a renewable feedstock available for conversion to biofuels and other bioproducts. β-xylosidase operates in the deconstruction of the polysaccharide to fermentable sugars. Glycoside hydrolase family 43 is recognized as a source of highly active β-xylosidases, some of which could have practical applications. The biochemical details of four GH43 β-xylosidases (those from Alkaliphilus metalliredigens QYMF, Bacillus pumilus, Bacillus subtilis subsp. subtilis str. 168, and Lactobacillus brevis ATCC 367) are examined here. Sedimentation equilibrium experiments indicate that the quaternary states of three of the enzymes are mixtures of monomers and homodimers (B. pumilus) or mixtures of homodimers and homotetramers (B. subtilis and L. brevis). k cat and k cat/K m values of the four enzymes are higher for xylobiose than for xylotriose, suggesting that the enzyme active sites comprise two subsites, as has been demonstrated by the X-ray structures of other GH43 β-xylosidases. The K i values for D-glucose (83.3-357 mM) and D-xylose (15.6-70.0 mM) of the four enzymes are moderately high. The four enzymes display good temperature (K t (0.5) ∼ 45 °C) and pH stabilities (>4.6 to <10.3). At pH 6.0 and 25 °C, the enzyme from L. brevis ATCC 367 displays the highest reported k cat and k cat/K m on natural substrates xylobiose (407 s(-1), 138 s(-1) mM(-1)), xylotriose (235 s(-1), 80.8 s(-1) mM(-1)), and xylotetraose (146 s(-1), 32.6 s(-1) mM(-1)).

  2. Artificial selection for high activity favors mighty mini-muscles in house mice.

    PubMed

    Houle-Leroy, Philippe; Guderley, Helga; Swallow, John G; Garland, Theodore

    2003-02-01

    After 14 generations of selection for voluntary wheel running, mice from the four replicate selected lines ran, on average, twice as many revolutions per day as those from the four unselected control lines. To examine whether the selected lines followed distinct strategies in the correlated responses of the size and metabolic capacities of the hindlimb muscles, we examined mice from selected lines, housed for 8 wk in cages with access to running wheels that were either free to rotate ("wheel access" group) or locked ("sedentary"). Thirteen of twenty individuals in one selected line (line 6) and two of twenty in another (line 3) showed a marked reduction ( approximately 50%) in total hindlimb muscle mass, consistent with the previously described expression of a small-muscle phenotype. Individuals with these "mini-muscles" were not significantly smaller in total body mass compared with line-mates with normal-sized muscles. Access to free wheels did not affect the relative mass of the mini-muscles, but did result in typical mammalian training effects for mitochondrial enzyme activities. Individuals with mini-muscles showed a higher mass-specific muscle aerobic capacity as revealed by the maximal in vitro rates of citrate synthase and cytochrome c oxidase. Moreover, these mice showed the highest activities of hexokinase and carnitine palmitoyl transferase. Females with mini-muscles showed the highest levels of phosphofructokinase, and males with mini-muscles the highest levels of pyruvate dehydrogenase. As shown by total muscle enzyme contents, the increase in mass-specific aerobic capacity almost completely compensated for the reduction caused by the "loss" of muscle mass. Moreover, the mini-muscle mice exhibited the lowest contents of lactate dehydrogenase and glycogen phosphorylase. Interestingly, metabolic capacities of mini-muscled mice resemble those of muscles after endurance training. Overall, our results demonstrate that during selection for voluntary wheel

  3. Take-off activity and orientation of triatomines (Heteroptera: Reduviidae) in relation to the presence of artificial lights.

    PubMed

    Minoli, Sebastián A; Lazzari, Claudio R

    2006-03-01

    We analysed the flying activity of Triatoma infestans and Rhodnius prolixus when confronted to artificial lights of different spectral quality. We found that the presence of light sources (white or ultraviolet) did not affect their spontaneous take-off rate. The comparison between species showed that R. prolixus was more prone to fly than T. infestans. Females of T. infestans initiated flight more frequently than males of the same species. Although the same tendency was observed in R. prolixus, no significant differences were assessed between sexes. Concerning the orienting behaviour of triatomines at take-off in relation to the position of the light source, T. infestans showed a significant tendency to fly towards white light, but a non-oriented response when confronted to UV light or in the absence of a light source. R. prolixus also preferred to fly towards a source of white light and exhibited a non-oriented response with no light. However, when the UV light was presented, these bugs exhibited a bimodal attraction/repellence-behaviour. Our results support true attraction by white light rather than menotaxis or arrival by chance. These findings are discussed in relation to the colonization of human dwellings by Chagas disease vectors.

  4. Mitral disc-valve variance

    PubMed Central

    Berroya, Renato B.; Escano, Fernando B.

    1972-01-01

    This report deals with a rare complication of disc-valve prosthesis in the mitral area. A significant disc poppet and struts destruction of mitral Beall valve prostheses occurred 20 and 17 months after implantation. The resulting valve incompetence in the first case contributed to the death of the patient. The durability of Teflon prosthetic valves appears to be in question and this type of valve probably will be unacceptable if there is an increasing number of disc-valve variance in the future. Images PMID:5017573

  5. Medical Information on Optical Disc*

    PubMed Central

    Schipma, Peter B.; Cichocki, Edward M.; Ziemer, Susan M.

    1987-01-01

    Optical discs may permit a revolutionary change in the distribution and use of medical information. A single compact disc, similar in size to that used for digital audio recording, can contain over 500 million characters of information that is accessible by a Personal Computer. These discs can be manufactured at a cost lower than that of print on paper, at reasonable volumes. Software can provide the health care professional with nearly instantaneous access to the information. Thus, for the first time, the opportunity exists to have large local medical information collections. This paper describes an application of this technology in the field of Oncology.

  6. Carbonic anhydrase immobilized on hollow fiber membranes using glutaraldehyde activated chitosan for artificial lung applications

    PubMed Central

    Kimmel, J. D.; Arazawa, D. T.; Ye, S.-H.; Shankarraman, V.; Wagner, W. R.

    2013-01-01

    Extracorporeal CO2 removal from circulating blood is a promising therapeutic modality for the treatment of acute respiratory failure. The enzyme carbonic anhydrase accelerates CO2 removal within gas exchange devices by locally catalyzing HCO3− into gaseous CO2 within the blood. In this work, we covalently immobilized carbonic anhydrase on the surface of polypropylene hollow fiber membranes using glutaraldehyde activated chitosan tethering to amplify the density of reactive amine functional groups for enzyme immobilization. XPS and a colorimetric amine assay confirmed higher amine densities on the chitosan coated fiber compared to control fiber. Chitosan/CA coated fibers exhibited accelerated CO2 removal in scaled-down gas exchange devices in buffer and blood (115 % enhancement vs. control, 37 % enhancement vs. control, respectively). Carbonic anhydrase immobilized directly on hollow fiber membranes without chitosan tethering resulted in no enhancement in CO2 removal. Additionally, fibers coated with chitosan/carbonic anhydrase demonstrated reduced platelet adhesion when exposed to blood compared to control and heparin coated fibers. PMID:23888352

  7. Self-assembled gold nanocrystal micelles act as an excellent artificial nanozyme with ribonuclease activity.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Zhiming; Fu, Qiuan; Li, Xiangqiu; Huang, Xin; Xu, Jiayun; Shen, Jiacong; Liu, Junqiu

    2009-06-01

    Water-soluble Au nanocrystal (NC) micelles with an inserted catalytic Cu(II) center that act as excellent nanoenzyme models for imitating ribonuclease were constructed by supramolecular self-assembly. The dodecane-1-thiol-based Au NC was constructed first, and subsequently the cationic surfactant hexadecyltrimethylammonium bromide and the catalytic ligand (N1,N1-bis(2-aminoethyl)-N2-dodecylethane-1,2-diamine) copper(II) were installed on the surface of the Au NC via hydrophobic interaction. The catalytic capability of the Au NC micelles designed was estimated by the cleavage of a typical RNA analogue, 2-hydroxypropyl p-nitrophenyl phosphate (HPNP). The study of the catalytic behavior of Au NC micelle catalysis showed that the Au NC micelles exhibited dramatic ribonuclease-like activity: a high rate acceleration of k(cat)/k(uncat) = 1.10 x 10(5) for the cleavage of HPNP in comparison with the spontaneous cleavage of HPNP (k(uncat)) was observed. The catalytic capability for HPNP cleavage by these functionalized Au NC micelles can be compared with that of covalent Au nanoparticles reported previously as nanozymes under comparable conditions. A detailed investigation of enzymatic kinetics was carried out and a possible mechanism was suggested.

  8. Carbonic anhydrase immobilized on hollow fiber membranes using glutaraldehyde activated chitosan for artificial lung applications.

    PubMed

    Kimmel, J D; Arazawa, D T; Ye, S-H; Shankarraman, V; Wagner, W R; Federspiel, W J

    2013-11-01

    Extracorporeal CO2 removal from circulating blood is a promising therapeutic modality for the treatment of acute respiratory failure. The enzyme carbonic anhydrase accelerates CO2 removal within gas exchange devices by locally catalyzing HCO3 (-) into gaseous CO2 within the blood. In this work, we covalently immobilized carbonic anhydrase on the surface of polypropylene hollow fiber membranes using glutaraldehyde activated chitosan tethering to amplify the density of reactive amine functional groups for enzyme immobilization. XPS and a colorimetric amine assay confirmed higher amine densities on the chitosan coated fiber compared to control fiber. Chitosan/CA coated fibers exhibited accelerated CO2 removal in scaled-down gas exchange devices in buffer and blood (115% enhancement vs. control, 37% enhancement vs. control, respectively). Carbonic anhydrase immobilized directly on hollow fiber membranes without chitosan tethering resulted in no enhancement in CO2 removal. Additionally, fibers coated with chitosan/carbonic anhydrase demonstrated reduced platelet adhesion when exposed to blood compared to control and heparin coated fibers.

  9. Experimental characterization of thermally-activated artificial muscles based on coiled nylon fishing lines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cherubini, Antonello; Moretti, Giacomo; Vertechy, Rocco; Fontana, Marco

    2015-06-01

    The discovery of an innovative class of thermally activated actuators based on twisted polymeric fibres has opened new horizons toward the development of effective devices that can be easily manufactured using inexpensive materials such as fishing lines or sewing threads. These new devices show large deformations when heated together with promising performance in terms of energy and power densities. With the aim of providing information and data useful for the future engineering applications, we present the results of a thermo-mechanical characterization conducted on a specific type of twisted polymeric fibre (i.e. nylon-made coiled actuators) that is considered particularly promising. A custom experimental test-bench and procedure have been developed and employed to run isothermal and isometric tensile tests on a set of specimens that are fabricated with a simple and repeatable process. The results of the experiments highlight some important issues related to the response of these actuators such as hysteresis, repeatability, predictability and stored elastic energy.

  10. The artificial zinc finger coding gene 'Jazz' binds the utrophin promoter and activates transcription.

    PubMed

    Corbi, N; Libri, V; Fanciulli, M; Tinsley, J M; Davies, K E; Passananti, C

    2000-06-01

    Up-regulation of utrophin gene expression is recognized as a plausible therapeutic approach in the treatment of Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). We have designed and engineered new zinc finger-based transcription factors capable of binding and activating transcription from the promoter of the dystrophin-related gene, utrophin. Using the recognition 'code' that proposes specific rules between zinc finger primary structure and potential DNA binding sites, we engineered a new gene named 'Jazz' that encodes for a three-zinc finger peptide. Jazz belongs to the Cys2-His2 zinc finger type and was engineered to target the nine base pair DNA sequence: 5'-GCT-GCT-GCG-3', present in the promoter region of both the human and mouse utrophin gene. The entire zinc finger alpha-helix region, containing the amino acid positions that are crucial for DNA binding, was specifically chosen on the basis of the contacts more frequently represented in the available list of the 'code'. Here we demonstrate that Jazz protein binds specifically to the double-stranded DNA target, with a dissociation constant of about 32 nM. Band shift and super-shift experiments confirmed the high affinity and specificity of Jazz protein for its DNA target. Moreover, we show that chimeric proteins, named Gal4-Jazz and Sp1-Jazz, are able to drive the transcription of a test gene from the human utrophin promoter.

  11. Ring-Closing and Cross-Metathesis with Artificial Metalloenzymes Created by Covalent Active Site-Directed Hybridization of a Lipase.

    PubMed

    Basauri-Molina, Manuel; Verhoeven, Dide G A; van Schaik, Arnoldus J; Kleijn, Henk; Klein Gebbink, Robertus J M

    2015-10-26

    A series of Grubbs-type catalysts that contain lipase-inhibiting phosphoester functionalities have been synthesized and reacted with the lipase cutinase, which leads to artificial metalloenzymes for olefin metathesis. The resulting hybrids comprise the organometallic fragment that is covalently bound to the active amino acid residue of the enzyme host in an orthogonal orientation. Differences in reactivity as well as accessibility of the active site by the functionalized inhibitor became evident through variation of the anchoring motif and substituents on the N-heterocyclic carbene ligand. Such observations led to the design of a hybrid that is active in the ring-closing metathesis and the cross-metathesis of N,N-diallyl-p-toluenesulfonamide and allylbenzene, respectively, the latter being the first example of its kind in the field of artificial metalloenzymes. © 2015 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  12. E-cadherin upregulates expression of matrix macromolecules aggrecan and collagen II in the intervertebral disc cells through activation of the intracellular BMP-Smad1/5 pathway.

    PubMed

    Wang, Zili; Kim, Sung Soo; Hutton, William C; Yoon, Sangwook Tim

    2012-11-01

    E-cadherin is a transmembrane protein that mediates cell-cell adhesion and cell-matrix interaction. Although the E-cadherin has been shown to mediate a broad-ranging cellular signals and functions, its effects on matrix metabolism of intervertebral discs (IVDs) are unknown. In this study, we investigated the effects of E-cadherin on IVD matrix synthesis using pharmacological and molecular biology methods. We showed that high levels of the E-cadherin are expressed in rabbits IVD cells. Our study indicates that the ectopic expression of E-cadherin can stimulate matrix anabolism of the IVD cells, which was evidenced by increased expression of the matrix macromolecules aggrecan and collagen II. We found that E-cadherin induces the expression of BMP-4 and BMP-7 genes and enhances Smad1/5 phosphorylation. Blocking BMP activity uses noggin suppressed E-cadherin-mediated upregulation of aggrecan and collagen II. Moreover, inhibition of Smad1/5 phosphorylation by dorsomorphin significantly repressed the E-cadherin induced expression of aggrecan and collagen II at the both mRNA and protein levels. Together this study demonstrates that the E-cadherin stimulates the synthesis of IVD matrix macromolecules aggrecan and collagen II through the induction of BMP genes and enhancement of the Smad1/5 phosphorylation. Thus E-cadherin may have value in the treatment of degenerated discs. Copyright © 2012 Orthopaedic Research Society.

  13. Decellularized allogeneic intervertebral disc: natural biomaterials for regenerating disc degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Zhijun; Chen, Kai; Shan, Zhi; Chen, Shuai; Wang, Jiying; Mo, Jian; Ma, Jianjun; Xu, Wenbing; Qin, An; Fan, Shunwu

    2016-01-01

    Intervertebral disc degeneration is associated with back pain and disc herniation. This study established a modified protocol for intervertebral disc (IVD) decellularization and prepared its extracellular matrix (ECM). By culturing mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs)(3, 7, 14 and 21 days) and human degenerative IVD cells (7 days) in the ECM, implanting it subcutaneously in rabbit and injecting ECM microparticles into degenerative disc, the biological safety and efficacy of decellularized IVD was evaluated both in vitro and in vivo. Here, we demonstrated that cellular components can be removed completely after decellularization and maximally retain the structure and biomechanics of native IVD. We revealed that allogeneic ECM did not evoke any apparent inflammatory reaction in vivo and no cytotoxicity was found in vitro. Moreover, IVD ECM can induce differentiation of MSCs into IVD-like cells in vitro. Furthermore, allogeneic ECM microparticles are effective on the treatment of rabbit disc degeneration in vivo. In conclusion, our study developed an optimized method for IVD decellularization and we proved decellularized IVD is safe and effective for the treatment of degenerated disc diseases. PMID:26933821

  14. Diaphragm paralysis from cervical disc lesions.

    PubMed

    Cloward, R B

    1988-01-01

    An opera singer, who "made her living with her diaphragm", developed a post-traumatic unilateral radiculopathy due to cervical disc lesions, C3 to C6. During one year of severe neck and left arm pain she gradually lost the ability to sing difficult operatic passages which brought an end to her music career. Following a three level anterior cervical decompression and fusion, the neck and arm pain was immediately relieved. One week later her voice and singing ability returned to its full strength and power permitting her to resume her activities as a vocalist. The diagnosis of paresis of the left hemi-diaphragm as part of the cervical disc syndrome was implied by postoperative retrospective inference.

  15. Modeling of rotating disc contactor (RDC) column

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ismail, Wan Nurul Aiffah; Zakaria, Siti Aisyah; Noor, Nor Fashihah Mohd; Sulong, Ibrahim; Arshad, Khairil Anuar

    2014-12-01

    Liquid-liquid extraction is one of the most important separation processes. Different kinds of liquid-liquid extractor such as Rotating Disc Contactor (RDC) Column being used in industries. The study of liquid-liquid extraction in an RDC column has become a very important subject to be discussed not just among chemical engineers but mathematician as well. In this research, the modeling of small diameter RDC column using the chemical system involving cumene/isobutryric asid/water are analyzed by the method of Artificial Neural Network (ANN). In the previous research, we begin the process of analyzed the data using methods of design of the experiments (DOE) to identify which factor and their interaction factor are significant and to determine the percentage of contribution of the variance for each factor. From the result obtained, we continue the research by discussed the development and validation of an artificial neural network model in estimating the concentration of continuous and concentration of dispersed outlet for an RDC column. It is expected that an efficient and reliable model will be formed to predict RDC column performance as an alternative to speed up the simulation process.

  16. Enlivening Physics, a Local Video Disc Project.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McInerney, M.

    1989-01-01

    Describes how to make and use an inexpensive video disc of physics demonstrations. Discusses the background, production of the disc, subject of the disc including angular momentum, "monkey and the hunter" experiment, Doppler shift, pressure of a constant volume of gas thermometer, and wave effects, and using the disc in classroom. (YP)

  17. 46 CFR 64.61 - Rupture disc.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 46 Shipping 2 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Rupture disc. 64.61 Section 64.61 Shipping COAST GUARD... SYSTEMS Pressure Relief Devices and Vacuum Relief Devices for MPTs § 64.61 Rupture disc. If a rupture disc is the only pressure relief device on the tank, the rupture disc must— (a) Rupture at a pressure of...

  18. 46 CFR 64.61 - Rupture disc.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 46 Shipping 2 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Rupture disc. 64.61 Section 64.61 Shipping COAST GUARD... SYSTEMS Pressure Relief Devices and Vacuum Relief Devices for MPTs § 64.61 Rupture disc. If a rupture disc is the only pressure relief device on the tank, the rupture disc must— (a) Rupture at a pressure of...

  19. Design Issues in Video Disc Map Display.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1984-10-01

    Tables: disc storage capacities under various conditions. Photos: map frames. Constanzo , D.J. (1984a), "The Potential for Video Disc Technology in...discs. Constanzo , D.J. (1984b), "Requirements and Specifications for Cartographic Video Discs", presented as a poster paper at the 1984 Army Science

  20. Enlivening Physics, a Local Video Disc Project.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McInerney, M.

    1989-01-01

    Describes how to make and use an inexpensive video disc of physics demonstrations. Discusses the background, production of the disc, subject of the disc including angular momentum, "monkey and the hunter" experiment, Doppler shift, pressure of a constant volume of gas thermometer, and wave effects, and using the disc in classroom. (YP)

  1. Artificial Reefs and Ocean Dumping.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Glueck, Richard D.

    1983-01-01

    Activities and instructional strategies for two multigrade lessons are provided. Activity objectives include describing an artificial reef (such as a sunken ocean liner) as an ecosystem, knowing animal types in the ecosystem, and describing a food web. (JN)

  2. Artificial Reefs and Ocean Dumping.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Glueck, Richard D.

    1983-01-01

    Activities and instructional strategies for two multigrade lessons are provided. Activity objectives include describing an artificial reef (such as a sunken ocean liner) as an ecosystem, knowing animal types in the ecosystem, and describing a food web. (JN)

  3. Amyloid-β(1–42) Protofibrils Formed in Modified Artificial Cerebrospinal Fluid Bind and Activate Microglia

    PubMed Central

    Paranjape, Geeta S.; Terrill, Shana E.; Gouwens, Lisa K.; Ruck, Benjamin M.; Nichols, Michael R.

    2012-01-01

    Soluble aggregated forms of amyloid-β protein (Aβ) have garnered significant attention recently for their role in Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Protofibrils are a subset of these soluble species and are considered intermediates in the aggregation pathway to mature Aβ fibrils. Biological studies have demonstrated that protofibrils exhibit both toxic and inflammatory activities. It is important in these in vitro studies to prepare protofibrils using solution conditions that are appropriate for cellular studies as well as conducive to biophysical characterization of protofibrils. Here we describe the preparation and characterization of Aβ(1–42) protofibrils in modified artificial cerebrospinal fluid (aCSF) and demonstrate their prominent binding and activation of microglial cells. A simple phosphate/bicarbonate buffer system was prepared that maintained the ionic strength and cell compatibility of F-12 medium but did not contain numerous supplements that interfere with spectroscopic analyses of Aβ protofibrils. Reconstitution of Aβ(1–42) in aCSF and isolation with size exclusion chromatography (SEC) revealed curvilinear β-sheet protofibrils <100 nm in length and hydrodynamic radii of 21 nm. Protofibril concentration determination by BCA assay, which was not possible in F-12 medium, was more accurately measured in aCSF. Protofibrils formed and isolated in aCSF, but not monomers, markedly stimulated TNFα production in BV-2 and primary microglia and bound in significant amounts to microglial membranes. This report demonstrates the suitability of a modified aCSF system for preparing SEC-isolated Aβ(1–42) protofibrils and underscores the unique ability of protofibrils to functionally interact with microglia. PMID:23242692

  4. Viability, infectivity and fatty acid synthetic activity of Perkinsus marinus meront cells incubated in estuarine and artificial seawater.

    PubMed

    Chu, Fu-Lin E; Lund, Eric D

    2006-07-25

    We investigated the viability and fatty acid synthetic activity of in vitro cultured Perkinsus marinus (Dermo) in lipid-free medium and estuarine water, and the infectivity of P. marinus maintained in artificial seawater (ASW). Viability and fatty acid synthetic activity in 7 d old P. marinus meronts maintained in lipid-free medium and estuarine water were tested. The infectivity of meronts incubated in ASW was examined by first incubating P. marinus meronts in ASW for 2, 3 or 7 d, and then inoculating viable ASW-incubated meronts into the shell cavity of individual oysters Crassostrea virginica. P. marinus infection prevalence and intensity in oysters were determined 9 wk post-inoculation. Heavy mortality occurred in meronts maintained in estuarine water, a drop from an initial value of 100% viable to 7.8 and 6.1% after 3 and 14 d incubation, respectively. Viability was 85 and 67% in meronts maintained in lipid-free medium for 3 and 24 d, respectively. Meronts kept in lipid-free medium for 14 d retained their ability to synthesize fatty acids. Viable meronts incubated in ASW remained infective for up to 7 d. The infection prevalences were 85, 48 and 100%, in the treatments inoculated with viable meronts that were incubated in ASW for 2, 3 and 7 d, respectively. Infection prevalence in the group inoculated with viable meronts immediately after they were transferred to ASW ranged from 61 to 85%. Our results suggest that in nature meronts can survive for at least 14 d outside the host. Viable meronts are not only infective, but are also able to replicate and retain their fatty acid synthetic ability for 7 d.

  5. 26 CFR 1.246-4 - Dividends from a DISC or former DISC.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-04-01

    ... 26 Internal Revenue 3 2011-04-01 2011-04-01 false Dividends from a DISC or former DISC. 1.246-4... a DISC or former DISC. The deduction provided in section 243 (relating to dividends received by... distribution or an amount treated as a dividend pursuant to section 995(c)) from a corporation which is a DISC...

  6. The DISC1 promoter: characterization and regulation by FOXP2.

    PubMed

    Walker, Rosie M; Hill, Alison E; Newman, Alice C; Hamilton, Gillian; Torrance, Helen S; Anderson, Susan M; Ogawa, Fumiaki; Derizioti, Pelagia; Nicod, Jérôme; Vernes, Sonja C; Fisher, Simon E; Thomson, Pippa A; Porteous, David J; Evans, Kathryn L

    2012-07-01

    Disrupted in schizophrenia 1 (DISC1) is a leading candidate susceptibility gene for schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and recurrent major depression, which has been implicated in other psychiatric illnesses of neurodevelopmental origin, including autism. DISC1 was initially identified at the breakpoint of a balanced chromosomal translocation, t(1;11) (q42.1;14.3), in a family with a high incidence of psychiatric illness. Carriers of the translocation show a 50% reduction in DISC1 protein levels, suggesting altered DISC1 expression as a pathogenic mechanism in psychiatric illness. Altered DISC1 expression in the post-mortem brains of individuals with psychiatric illness and the frequent implication of non-coding regions of the gene by association analysis further support this assertion. Here, we provide the first characterization of the DISC1 promoter region. Using dual luciferase assays, we demonstrate that a region -300 to -177 bp relative to the transcription start site (TSS) contributes positively to DISC1 promoter activity, while a region -982 to -301 bp relative to the TSS confers a repressive effect. We further demonstrate inhibition of DISC1 promoter activity and protein expression by forkhead-box P2 (FOXP2), a transcription factor implicated in speech and language function. This inhibition is diminished by two distinct FOXP2 point mutations, R553H and R328X, which were previously found in families affected by developmental verbal dyspraxia. Our work identifies an intriguing mechanistic link between neurodevelopmental disorders that have traditionally been viewed as diagnostically distinct but which do share varying degrees of phenotypic overlap.

  7. Tissue engineering: A live disc

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hukins, David W. L.

    2005-12-01

    A material-cell hybrid device that mimics the anatomic shape of the intervertebral disc has been made and successfully implanted into mice to show that tissue engineering may, in the future, benefit sufferers from back pain.

  8. Eclipse Mapping of Accretion Discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baptista, R.

    The eclipse mapping method is an inversion technique that makes use of the information contained in eclipse light curves to probe the structure, the spectrum and the time evolution of accretion discs. In this review I present the basics of the method and discuss its different implementations. I summarize the most important results obtained to date and discuss how they have helped to improve our understanding of accretion physics, from testing the theoretical radial brightness temperature distribution and measuring mass accretion rates to showing the evolution of the structure of a dwarf novae disc throughout its outburst cycle, from isolating the spectrum of a disc wind to revealing the geometry of disc spiral shocks. I end with an outline of the future prospects.

  9. Disc Golf, a Growing Sport

    PubMed Central

    Nelson, Joseph T.; Jones, Richard E.; Runstrom, Michael; Hardy, Jolene

    2015-01-01

    Background Disc golf is a sport played much like traditional golf, but rather than using a ball and club, players throw flying discs with various throwing motions. It has been played by an estimated 8 to 12 million people in the United States. Like all sports, injuries sustained while playing disc golf are not uncommon. Although formalized in the 1970s, it has grown at a rapid pace; however, disc golf–related injuries have yet to be described in the medical literature. Purpose To describe the most common injuries incurred by disc golf players while comparing the different types of throwing styles. Study Design Descriptive epidemiology study. Methods The data in this study were collected from 883 disc golf players who responded to an online survey collected over a 1-month period. Respondents answered 49 questions related to demographics, experience, style of play, and injury details. Using a chi-square analysis, common injuries sustained in players using backhand and forehand throwing styles were compared. Results More than 81% of respondents stated that they had sustained an injury playing disc golf, including injuries to the elbow (n = 325), shoulder (n = 305), back (n = 218), and knee (n = 199). The injuries were most commonly described as a muscle strain (n = 241), sprain (n = 162), and tendinitis (n = 145). The type of throw primarily used by players varied, with 86.2% using backhand, 12.7% using forehand, and 1.1% using an overhead throw. Players using a forehand throw were more likely to sustain an elbow injury (P = .014). Many players (n = 115) stated they had undergone surgery due to a disc golf–related injury, with the most common surgeries including meniscal, shoulder, spine, and foot/ankle surgeries. Conclusion The majority of surveyed disc golfers sustained at least 1 injury while playing disc golf, with many requiring surgery. The types of injuries sustained by players varied by the types of throw primarily used. As the sport of disc golf continues

  10. Discover cervical disc arthroplasty versus anterior cervical discectomy and fusion in symptomatic cervical disc diseases: A meta-analysis

    PubMed Central

    Shangguan, Lei; Ning, Guang-Zhi; Tang, Yu; Wang, Zhe; Luo, Zhuo-Jing; Zhou, Yue

    2017-01-01

    Objective Symptomatic cervical disc disease (SCDD) is a common degenerative disease, and Discover artificial cervical disc, a new-generation nonconstrained artificial disk, has been developed and performed gradually to treat it. We performed this meta-analysis to compare the efficacy and safety between Discover cervical disc arthroplasty (DCDA) and anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) for SCDD. Methods An exhaustive literature search of PubMed, EMBASE, and the Cochrane Library was conducted to identify randomized controlled trials that compared DCDA with ACDF for patients suffering SCDD. A random-effect model was used. Results were reported as standardized mean difference or risk ratio with 95% confidence interval. Results Of 33 articles identified, six studies were included. Compared with ACDF, DCDA demonstrated shorter operation time (P < 0.0001), and better range of motion (ROM) at the operative level (P < 0.00001). But no significant differences were observed in blood loss, neck disability index (NDI) scores, neck and arm pain scores, Japanese orthopaedic association (JOA) scores, secondary surgery procedures and adverse events (P > 0.05). Subgroup analyses did not demonstrated significant differences. Conclusion In conclusion, DCDA presented shorter operation time, and better ROM at the operative level. However, no significant differences were observed in blood loss, NDI scores, neck and arm pain scores, JOA scores, secondary surgery procedures and adverse events between the two groups. Additionally, more studies of high quality with mid- to long-term follow-up are required in future. PMID:28358860

  11. Face-on accretion onto a protoplanetary disc

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wijnen, T. P. G.; Pols, O. R.; Pelupessy, F. I.; Portegies Zwart, S.

    2016-10-01

    Context. Stars are generally born in clustered stellar environments, which can affect their subsequent evolution. An example of this environmental influence can be found in globular clusters (GCs) harbouring multiple stellar populations. An evolutionary scenario in which a second (and possibly higher order) population is formed by the accretion of chemically enriched material onto the low-mass stars in the initial GC population has been suggested to explain the multiple stellar populations. The idea, dubbed early disc accretion, is that the low-mass, pre-main-sequence stars sweep up gas expelled by the more massive stars of the same generation into their protoplanetary disc as they move through the cluster core. The same process could also occur, to a lesser extent, in embedded stellar systems that are less dense. Aims: Using assumptions that represent the (dynamical) conditions in a typical GC, we investigate whether a low-mass star of 0.4 M⊙ surrounded by a protoplanetary disc can accrete a sufficient amount of enriched material to account for the observed abundances in so-called second generation GC stars. In particular, we focus on the gas-loading rate onto the disc and star, as well as on the lifetime and stability of the disc. Methods: We perform simulations at multiple resolutions with two different smoothed particle hydrodynamics codes and compare the results. Each code uses a different implementation of the artificial viscosity. Results: We find that the gas-loading rate is about a factor of two smaller than the rate based on geometric arguments, because the effective cross-section of the disc is smaller than its surface area. Furthermore, the loading rate is consistent for both codes, irrespective of resolution. Although the disc gains mass in the high-resolution runs, it loses angular momentum on a timescale of 104 yr. Two effects determine the loss of (specific) angular momentum in our simulations: (1) continuous ram pressure stripping and (2

  12. Percutaneous diode laser disc nucleoplasty

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Menchetti, P. P.; Longo, Leonardo

    2004-09-01

    The treatment of herniated disc disease (HNP) over the years involved different miniinvasive surgical options. The classical microsurgical approach has been substituted over the years both by endoscopic approach in which is possible to practice via endoscopy a laser thermo-discoplasty, both by percutaneous laser disc nucleoplasty. In the last ten years, the percutaneous laser disc nucleoplasty have been done worldwide in more than 40000 cases of HNP. Because water is the major component of the intervertebral disc, and in HNP pain is caused by the disc protrusion pressing against the nerve root, a 980 nm Diode laser introduced via a 22G needle under X-ray guidance and local anesthesia, vaporizes a small amount of nucleous polposus with a disc shrinkage and a relief of pressure on nerve root. Most patients get off the table pain free and are back to work in 5 to 7 days. Material and method: to date, 130 patients (155 cases) suffering for relevant symptoms therapy-resistant 6 months on average before consulting our department, have been treated. Eightyfour (72%) males and 46 (28%) females had a percutaneous laser disc nucleoplasty. The average age of patients operated was 48 years (22 - 69). The level of disc removal was L3/L4 in 12 cases, L4/L5 in 87 cases and L5/S1 in 56 cases. Two different levels were treated at the same time in 25 patients. Results: the success rate at a minimum follow-up of 6 months was 88% with a complication rate of 0.5%.

  13. [Artificial neural networks in Neurosciences].

    PubMed

    Porras Chavarino, Carmen; Salinas Martínez de Lecea, José María

    2011-11-01

    This article shows that artificial neural networks are used for confirming the relationships between physiological and cognitive changes. Specifically, we explore the influence of a decrease of neurotransmitters on the behaviour of old people in recognition tasks. This artificial neural network recognizes learned patterns. When we change the threshold of activation in some units, the artificial neural network simulates the experimental results of old people in recognition tasks. However, the main contributions of this paper are the design of an artificial neural network and its operation inspired by the nervous system and the way the inputs are coded and the process of orthogonalization of patterns.

  14. Post-drilling hydrothermal vent and associated biological activities seen through artificial hydrothermal vents in the Iheya North field, Okinawa Trough

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Takai, K.; Kawagucci, S.; Miyazaki, J.; Watsuji, T.; Ishibashi, J.; Yamamoto, H.; Nozaki, T.; Kashiwabara, T.; Shibuya, T.

    2012-12-01

    In 2010, IODP Expedition 331 was conducted in the Iheya North Field, the Okinawa Trough and drilled several sites in hydrothermally active subseafloor. In addition, during the IODP Expedition 331, four new hydrothermal vents were created. These post-drilling artificial hydrothermal vents provide excellent opportunities to investigate the physical, chemical and microbiological characteristics of the previously unexplored subseafloor hydrothermal fluid reservoirs, and to monitor and estimate how the anthropogenic drilling behaviors affect the deep-sea hydrothermal vent ecosystem. We were very much interested in the difference of hydrothermal fluid chemistry between the natural hydrothermal vents and the artificial hydrothermal vents. The IODP porewater chemistry of the cores pointed to the density-driven stratification of the phase-separated hydrothermal fluids and the natural vent fluids were likely derived only from the shallower vapor-enriched phases. However, the artificial hydrothermal vents had deeper fluid sources in the subseafloor hydrothermal fluid reservoirs composed of vapor-lost (Cl-enriched) phases. The fluids from the artificial hydrothermal vents were sampled by ROV at 5, 12 and 18 months after the IODP expedition. The artificial hydrothermal vent fluids were slightly enriched with Cl as compared to the natural hydrothermal vent fluids. Thus, the artificial hydrothermal vents successfully entrained the previously unexplored subseafloor hydrothermal fluids. The newly created hydrothermal vents also hosted the very quickly grown, enormous chimney structures, of which mineral compositions were highly variable among the vents. However, the quickly grown C0016B and C0016D vent chimneys were found to be typical Kuroko ore even though the chimney growth rates in the artificial vents were extremely faster than those in the natural vents. In addition, the IODP drilling operation not only created new hydrothermal vents by deep drilling but also induced the

  15. Comparison of Animal Discs Used in Disc Research to Human Lumbar Disc: Torsion Mechanics and Collagen Content

    PubMed Central

    Showalter, Brent L.; Beckstein, Jesse C.; Martin, John T.; Beattie, Elizabeth E.; Orías, Alejandro A. Espinoza; Schaer, Thomas P.; Vresilovic, Edward J.; Elliott, Dawn M.

    2012-01-01

    Study Design Experimental measurement and normalization of in vitro disc torsion mechanics and collagen content for several animal species used in intervertebral disc research and comparing these to the human disc. Objective To aid in the selection of appropriate animal models for disc research by measuring torsional mechanical properties and collagen content. Summary of Background Data There is lack of data and variability in testing protocols for comparing animal and human disc torsion mechanics and collagen content. Methods Intervertebral disc torsion mechanics were measured and normalized by disc height and polar moment of inertia for 11 disc types in 8 mammalian species: the calf, pig, baboon, goat, sheep, rabbit, rat, and mouse lumbar, and cow, rat, and mouse caudal. Collagen content was measured and normalized by dry weight for the same discs except the rat and mouse. Collagen fiber stretch in torsion was calculated using an analytical model. Results Measured torsion parameters varied by several orders of magnitude across the different species. After geometric normalization, only the sheep and pig discs were statistically different from human. Fiber stretch was found to be highly dependent on the assumed initial fiber angle. The collagen content of the discs was similar, especially in the outer annulus where only the calf and goat discs were statistically different from human. Disc collagen content did not correlate with torsion mechanics. Conclusion Disc torsion mechanics are comparable to human lumbar discs in 9 of 11 disc types after normalization by geometry. The normalized torsion mechanics and collagen content of the multiple animal discs presented is useful for selecting and interpreting results for animal models of the disc. Structural composition of the disc, such as initial fiber angle, may explain the differences that were noted between species after geometric normalization. PMID:22333953

  16. Artificial Intelligence.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wash, Darrel Patrick

    1989-01-01

    Making a machine seem intelligent is not easy. As a consequence, demand has been rising for computer professionals skilled in artificial intelligence and is likely to continue to go up. These workers develop expert systems and solve the mysteries of machine vision, natural language processing, and neural networks. (Editor)

  17. Designing mucoadhesive discs containing stem bark extract of Ziziphus jujuba based on Iranian traditional documents

    PubMed Central

    Hamedi, Shokouhsadat; Shams-Ardakani, Mohammad Reza; Sadeghpour, Omid; Amin, Gholamreza; Hajighasemali, Dawood; Orafai, Hossein

    2016-01-01

    Objective (s): Mucoadhesive disc is one of the various routes of drug delivery for curing buccal disease Materials and Methods: Every discs containing 70 mg stem bark extract of Ziziphus jujuba were formulated by using Carbopol 934, PVP k30 and gelatin as polymers. Discs were made by granulation and direct compression. Discs were standardized based on the total phenol. Properties such as in vitro and in vivo mucoadhesion, drug release, water uptake, and disintegration were carried out. Results: Discs showed excellent mucoadhesion and released high amount of the active ingredients (47%) immediately and completed after approximately the first hour. They had a good adhesion in buccal cavity. Conclusion: This study showed that the kinetics of release of the active substance from the mucoadhesive disc obeyed the zero order kinetic and didn’t follow the fick's law. The water uptake and dissolution (DS), increased with the passing of time. PMID:27114804

  18. Evolution of protoplanetary discs with magnetically driven disc winds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Suzuki, Takeru K.; Ogihara, Masahiro; Morbidelli, Alessandro; Crida, Aurélien; Guillot, Tristan

    2016-12-01

    Aims: We investigate the evolution of protoplanetary discs (PPDs) with magnetically driven disc winds and viscous heating. Methods: We considered an initially massive disc with 0.1 M⊙ to track the evolution from the early stage of PPDs. We solved the time evolution of surface density and temperature by taking into account viscous heating and the loss of mass and angular momentum by the disc winds within the framework of a standard α model for accretion discs. Our model parameters, turbulent viscosity, disc wind mass-loss, and disc wind torque, which were adopted from local magnetohydrodynamical simulations and constrained by the global energetics of the gravitational accretion, largely depends on the physical condition of PPDs, particularly on the evolution of the vertical magnetic flux in weakly ionized PPDs. Results: Although there are still uncertainties concerning the evolution of the vertical magnetic flux that remains, the surface densities show a large variety, depending on the combination of these three parameters, some of which are very different from the surface density expected from the standard accretion. When a PPD is in a wind-driven accretion state with the preserved vertical magnetic field, the radial dependence of the surface density can be positive in the inner region <1-10 au. The mass accretion rates are consistent with observations, even in the very low level of magnetohydrodynamical turbulence. Such a positive radial slope of the surface density strongly affects planet formation because it inhibits the inward drift or even causes the outward drift of pebble- to boulder-sized solid bodies, and it also slows down or even reversed the inward type-I migration of protoplanets. Conclusions: The variety of our calculated PPDs should yield a wide variety of exoplanet systems.

  19. Can Exercise Positively Influence the Intervertebral Disc?

    PubMed

    Belavý, Daniel L; Albracht, Kirsten; Bruggemann, Gert-Peter; Vergroesen, Pieter-Paul A; van Dieën, Jaap H

    2016-04-01

    To better understand what kinds of sports and exercise could be beneficial for the intervertebral disc (IVD), we performed a review to synthesise the literature on IVD adaptation with loading and exercise. The state of the literature did not permit a systematic review; therefore, we performed a narrative review. The majority of the available data come from cell or whole-disc loading models and animal exercise models. However, some studies have examined the impact of specific sports on IVD degeneration in humans and acute exercise on disc size. Based on the data available in the literature, loading types that are likely beneficial to the IVD are dynamic, axial, at slow to moderate movement speeds, and of a magnitude experienced in walking and jogging. Static loading, torsional loading, flexion with compression, rapid loading, high-impact loading and explosive tasks are likely detrimental for the IVD. Reduced physical activity and disuse appear to be detrimental for the IVD. We also consider the impact of genetics and the likelihood of a 'critical period' for the effect of exercise in IVD development. The current review summarises the literature to increase awareness amongst exercise, rehabilitation and ergonomic professionals regarding IVD health and provides recommendations on future directions in research.

  20. Testing hydrodynamics schemes in galaxy disc simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Few, C. G.; Dobbs, C.; Pettitt, A.; Konstandin, L.

    2016-08-01

    We examine how three fundamentally different numerical hydrodynamics codes follow the evolution of an isothermal galactic disc with an external spiral potential. We compare an adaptive mesh refinement code (RAMSES), a smoothed particle hydrodynamics code (SPHNG), and a volume-discretized mesh-less code (GIZMO). Using standard refinement criteria, we find that RAMSES produces a disc that is less vertically concentrated and does not reach such high densities as the SPHNG or GIZMO runs. The gas surface density in the spiral arms increases at a lower rate for the RAMSES simulations compared to the other codes. There is also a greater degree of substructure in the SPHNG and GIZMO runs and secondary spiral arms are more pronounced. By resolving the Jeans length with a greater number of grid cells, we achieve more similar results to the Lagrangian codes used in this study. Other alterations to the refinement scheme (adding extra levels of refinement and refining based on local density gradients) are less successful in reducing the disparity between RAMSES and SPHNG/GIZMO. Although more similar, SPHNG displays different density distributions and vertical mass profiles to all modes of GIZMO (including the smoothed particle hydrodynamics version). This suggests differences also arise which are not intrinsic to the particular method but rather due to its implementation. The discrepancies between codes (in particular, the densities reached in the spiral arms) could potentially result in differences in the locations and time-scales for gravitational collapse, and therefore impact star formation activity in more complex galaxy disc simulations.

  1. Optimizing stabilization of waste-activated sludge using Fered-Fenton process and artificial neural network modeling (KSOFM, MLP).

    PubMed

    Badalians Gholikandi, Gagik; Masihi, Hamidreza; Azimipour, Mohammad; Abrishami, Ali; Mirabi, Maryam

    2014-01-01

    Sludge management is a fundamental activity in accordance with wastewater treatment aims. Sludge stabilization is always considered as a significant step of wastewater sludge handling. There has been a progressive development observed in the approach to the novel solutions in this regard. In this research, based on own initially experimental results in lab-scale regarding Fered-Fenton processes in view of organic loading (volatile-suspended solids, VSS) removal efficiency, a combination of both methods towards proper improving of excess biological sludge stabilization was investigated. Firstly, VSS removal efficiency has been experimentally studied in lab-scale under different operational conditions taking into consideration pH [Fe(2+)]/[H2O2], detention time [H2O2], and current density parameters. Therefore, the correlations of the same parameters have been determined by utilizing Kohonen self-organizing feature maps (KSOFM). In addition, multi-layer perceptron (MLP) has been employed afterwards for a comprehensive evaluation of investigating parameters correlation and prediction aims. The findings indicated that the best proportion of iron to hydrogen peroxide and the optimum pH were 0.58 and 3.1, respectively. Furthermore, maximum retention time about 6 h with a hydrogen peroxide concentration of 1,568 mg/l and a current density of 650-750 mA results to the optimum VSS removal (efficiency equals to 81 %). The performance of KSOFM and MLP models is found to be magnificent, with correlation ranging (R) from 0.873 to 0.998 for the process simulation and prediction. Finally, it can be concluded that the Fered-Fenton reactor is a suitable efficient process to reduce considerably sludge organic load and mathematical modeling tools as artificial neural networks are impressive methods of process simulation and prediction accordingly.

  2. Radio monitoring of protoplanetary discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ubach, C.; Maddison, S. T.; Wright, C. M.; Wilner, D. J.; Lommen, D. J. P.; Koribalski, B.

    2017-04-01

    Protoplanetary disc systems observed at radio wavelengths often show excess emission above that expected from a simple extrapolation of thermal dust emission observed at short millimetre wavelengths. Monitoring the emission at radio wavelengths can be used to help disentangle the physical mechanisms responsible for this excess, including free-free emission from a wind or jet, and chromospheric emission associated with stellar activity. We present new results from a radio monitoring survey conducted with Australia Telescope Compact Array over the course of several years with observation intervals spanning days, months and years, where the flux variability of 11 T Tauri stars in the Chamaeleon and Lupus star-forming regions was measured at 7 and 15 mm, and 3 and 6 cm. Results show that most sources are variable to some degree at 7 mm, indicating the presence of emission mechanisms other than thermal dust in some sources. Additionally, evidence of grain growth to centimetre-sized pebbles was found for some sources that also have signs of variable flux at 7 mm. We conclude that multiple processes contributing to the emission are common in T Tauri stars at 7 mm and beyond, and that a detection at a single epoch at radio wavelengths should not be used to determine all processes contributing to the emission.

  3. Radio Monitoring of Protoplanetary Discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ubach, C.; Maddison, S. T.; Wright, C. M.; Wilner, D. J.; Lommen, D. J. P.; Koribalski, B.

    2017-01-01

    Protoplanetary disc systems observed at radio wavelengths often show excess emission above that expected from a simple extrapolation of thermal dust emission observed at short millimetre wavelengths. Monitoring the emission at radio wavelengths can be used to help disentangle the physical mechanisms responsible for this excess, including free-free emission from a wind or jet, and chromospheric emission associated with stellar activity. We present new results from a radio monitoring survey conducted with Australia Telescope Compact Array over the course of several years with observation intervals spanning days, months and years, where the flux variability of 11 T Tauri stars in the Chamaeleon and Lupus star forming regions was measured at 7 and 15 mm and 3 and 6 cm. Results show that for most sources are variable to some degree at 7 mm, indicating the presence of emission mechanisms other than thermal dust in some sources. Additionally, evidence of grain growth to cm-sized pebbles was found for some sources that also have signs of variable flux at 7 mm. We conclude that multiple processes contributing to the emission are common in T Tauri stars at 7 mm and beyond, and that a detection at a single epoch at radio wavelengths should not be used to determine all processes contributing to the emission.

  4. Close relationship of tissue plasminogen activator-plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 complex with multiple organ dysfunction syndrome investigated by means of the artificial pancreas

    PubMed Central

    Hoshino, Masami; Haraguchi, Yoshikura; Hirasawa, Hiroyuki; Sakai, Motohiro; Saegusa, Hiroshi; Hayashi, Kazushiro; Horita, Naoki; Ohsawa, Hiroyuki

    2001-01-01

    Background: Glucose tolerance (GT) has not been taken into consideration in investigations concerning relationships between coagulopathy and multiple organ dysfunction syndrome (MODS), and endothelial cell activation/endothelial cell injury (ECA/ECI) in septic patients, although coagulopathy is known to be influenced by blood glucose level. We investigated those relationships under strict blood glucose control and evaluation of GT with the glucose clamp method by means of the artificial pancreas in nine septic patients with glucose intolerance. The relationships between GT and blood stress related hormone levels (SRH) were also investigated. Methods: The amount of metabolized glucose (M value), as the parameter of GT, was measured by the euglycemic hyperinsulinemic glucose clamp method, in which the blood glucose level was clamped at 80 mg/dl under a continuous insulin infusion rate of 1.12 mU/kg per min, using the artificial pancreas, STG-22. Multiple organ failure (MOF) score was calculated using the MOF criteria of Japanese Association for Critical Care Medicine. Regarding coagulopathy, the following parameters were used: disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC) score (calculated from the DIC criteria of the Ministry of Health and Welfare of Japan) and the parameters used for calculating DIC score, protein-C, protein-S, plasminogen, antithrombin III (AT-III), plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 (PAI-1), and tissue plasminogen activator-PAI-1 (tPA-PAI-1) complex. Thrombomodulin (TM) was measured as the indicator of ECI. Results: There were no significant correlations between M value and SRH, parameters indicating coagulopathy and the MOF score. The MOF score and blood TM levels were positively correlated with DIC score, thrombin-AT-III complex and tPA-PAI-1 complex, and negatively correlated with blood platelet count. Conclusions: GT was not significantly related to SRH, coagulopathy and MODS under strict blood glucose control. Hypercoagulability was closely

  5. MoS2 atomic layers with artificial active edge sites as transparent counter electrodes for improved performance of dye-sensitized solar cells.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jing; Najmaei, Sina; Lin, Hong; Lou, Jun

    2014-05-21

    A novel MoS2 transparent counter electrode for dye-sensitized solar cells is reported. In order to enhance the catalytic activity of the electrode, active edge sites are created artificially by patterning holes on MoS2 atomic layers. Electrochemical analysis shows that the electrochemical activity is significantly improved after the patterning of holes. The photon-to-electron efficiency of the dye-sensitized solar cells based on MoS2 atomic layer counter electrodes is increased remarkably from 2% to 5.8% after the hole patterning.

  6. Exploration of peptides that fit into the thermally vibrating active site of cathepsin K protease by alternating artificial intelligence and molecular simulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nishiyama, Katsuhiko

    2017-08-01

    Eighteen tripeptides that fit into the thermally vibrating active site of cathepsin K were discovered by alternating artificial intelligence and molecular simulation. The 18 tripeptides fit the active site better than the cysteine protease inhibitor E64, and a better inhibitor of cathepsin K could be designed considering these tripeptides. Among the 18 tripeptides, Phe-Arg-Asp and Tyr-Arg-Asp fit the active site the best and their structural similarity should be considered in the design process. Interesting factors emerged from the structure of the decision tree, and its structural information will guide exploration of potential inhibitor molecules for proteases.

  7. MoS2 atomic layers with artificial active edge sites as transparent counter electrodes for improved performance of dye-sensitized solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Jing; Najmaei, Sina; Lin, Hong; Lou, Jun

    2014-04-01

    A novel MoS2 transparent counter electrode for dye-sensitized solar cells is reported. In order to enhance the catalytic activity of the electrode, active edge sites are created artificially by patterning holes on MoS2 atomic layers. Electrochemical analysis shows that the electrochemical activity is significantly improved after the patterning of holes. The photon-to-electron efficiency of the dye-sensitized solar cells based on MoS2 atomic layer counter electrodes is increased remarkably from 2% to 5.8% after the hole patterning.

  8. Nuclear DISC1 regulates CRE-mediated gene transcription and sleep homeostasis in the fruit fly

    PubMed Central

    Sawamura, Naoya; Ando, Tetsuya; Maruyama, Yasushi; Fujimuro, Masahiro; Mochizuki, Hiroaki; Honjo, Ken; Shimoda, Masami; Toda, Hirofumi; Sawamura-Yamamoto, Takako; Makuch, Lauren A; Hayashi, Akiko; Ishizuka, Koko; Cascella, Nicola G.; Kamiya, Atsushi; Ishida, Norio; Tomoda, Toshifumi; Hai, Tsonwin; Furukubo-Tokunaga, Katsuo; Sawa, Akira

    2009-01-01

    Disrupted-In-Schizophrenia-1 (DISC1) is one of major susceptibility factors for a wide range of mental illnesses, including schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, major depression, and autism spectrum conditions. DISC1 is located in several subcellular domains, such as the centrosome and the nucleus, and interacts with various proteins, including NudE-like (NUDEL/NDEL1) and activating transcription factor 4 (ATF4)/CREB2. Nevertheless, a role for DISC1 in vivo remains to be elucidated. Therefore, we have generated a Drosophila model for examining normal functions of DISC1 in living organisms. DISC1 transgenic flies with preferential accumulation of exogenous human DISC1 in the nucleus display disturbance in sleep homeostasis, which has been reportedly associated with CREB signaling/CRE-mediated gene transcription. Thus, in mammalian cells, we characterized nuclear DISC1, and identified a subset of nuclear DISC1 that co-localizes with the promyelocytic leukemia (PML) bodies, a nuclear compartment for gene transcription. Furthermore, we identified three functional cis-elements that regulate the nuclear localization of DISC1. We also report that DISC1 interacts with ATF4/CREB2 and a co-repressor N-CoR, modulating CRE-mediated gene transcription. PMID:18762802

  9. Nuclear DISC1 regulates CRE-mediated gene transcription and sleep homeostasis in the fruit fly.

    PubMed

    Sawamura, N; Ando, T; Maruyama, Y; Fujimuro, M; Mochizuki, H; Honjo, K; Shimoda, M; Toda, H; Sawamura-Yamamoto, T; Makuch, L A; Hayashi, A; Ishizuka, K; Cascella, N G; Kamiya, A; Ishida, N; Tomoda, T; Hai, T; Furukubo-Tokunaga, K; Sawa, A

    2008-12-01

    Disrupted-in-schizophrenia-1 (DISC1) is one of major susceptibility factors for a wide range of mental illnesses, including schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, major depression and autism spectrum conditions. DISC1 is located in several subcellular domains, such as the centrosome and the nucleus, and interacts with various proteins, including NudE-like (NUDEL/NDEL1) and activating transcription factor 4 (ATF4)/CREB2. Nevertheless, a role for DISC1 in vivo remains to be elucidated. Therefore, we have generated a Drosophila model for examining normal functions of DISC1 in living organisms. DISC1 transgenic flies with preferential accumulation of exogenous human DISC1 in the nucleus display disturbance in sleep homeostasis, which has been reportedly associated with CREB signaling/CRE-mediated gene transcription. Thus, in mammalian cells, we characterized nuclear DISC1, and identified a subset of nuclear DISC1 that colocalizes with the promyelocytic leukemia (PML) bodies, a nuclear compartment for gene transcription. Furthermore, we identified three functional cis-elements that regulate the nuclear localization of DISC1. We also report that DISC1 interacts with ATF4/CREB2 and a corepressor N-CoR, modulating CRE-mediated gene transcription.

  10. Minimally Invasive Anterior Cervical Discectomy Without Fusion to Treat Cervical Disc Herniations in Patients with Previous Cervical Fusions.

    PubMed

    Jacobson, Robert E; Granville, Michelle; Berti, Aldo

    2017-04-03

    Adjacent level cervical disc disease and secondarily progressive disc space degeneration that develops years after previously successful anterior cervical fusion at one or more levels is a common, but potentially complex problem to manage. The patient is faced with the option of further open surgery which involves adding another level of disc removal with fusion, posterior decompression, and stabilization, or possibly replacing the degenerated disc with an artificial disc construct. These three cases demonstrate that some patients, especially after minor trauma, may have small herniated discs as the cause for their new symptoms rather than progressive segmental degeneration. Each patient became symptomatic after minor trauma three to six years after the original fusion and had no or minimal radiologic changes of narrowing of the disc or spur formation commonly seen in adjacent level disease, but rather had magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) findings typical of small herniated discs. After failing multiple months of conservative treatment they were offered surgery as an option. Subsequently, all three were successfully treated with minimal anterior discectomy without fusion. There are no reports in the literature of using minimal anterior cervical discectomy without fusion in previous fused patients. This report reviews the background of adjacent level cervical disease, the various biomechanical explanations for developing a new disc herniation rather than progressive segmental degeneration, and how anterior cervical discectomy without fusion can be an option in these patients.

  11. An artificial molecular pump

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cheng, Chuyang; McGonigal, Paul R.; Schneebeli, Severin T.; Li, Hao; Vermeulen, Nicolaas A.; Ke, Chenfeng; Stoddart, J. Fraser

    2015-06-01

    Carrier proteins consume fuel in order to pump ions or molecules across cell membranes, creating concentration gradients. Their control over diffusion pathways, effected entirely through noncovalent bonding interactions, has inspired chemists to devise artificial systems that mimic their function. Here, we report a wholly artificial compound that acts on small molecules to create a gradient in their local concentration. It does so by using redox energy and precisely organized noncovalent bonding interactions to pump positively charged rings from solution and ensnare them around an oligomethylene chain, as part of a kinetically trapped entanglement. A redox-active viologen unit at the heart of a dumbbell-shaped molecular pump plays a dual role, first attracting and then repelling the rings during redox cycling, thereby enacting a flashing energy ratchet mechanism with a minimalistic design. Our artificial molecular pump performs work repetitively for two cycles of operation and drives rings away from equilibrium toward a higher local concentration.

  12. The life cycles of Be viscous decretion discs: time-dependent modelling of infrared continuum observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vieira, R. G.; Carciofi, A. C.; Bjorkman, J. E.; Rivinius, Th.; Baade, D.; Rímulo, L. R.

    2017-01-01

    We apply the viscous decretion disc (VDD) model to interpret the infrared disc continuum emission of 80 Be stars observed in different epochs. In this way, we determined 169 specific disc structures, namely their density scale, ρ0, and exponent, n. We found that the n values range mainly between 1.5 and 3.5, and ρ0 varies between 10-12 and 10-10 g cm-3, with a peak close to the lower value. Our large sample also allowed us to firmly establish that the discs around early-type stars are denser than in late-type stars. Additionally, we estimated the disc mass decretion rates and found that they range between 10-12 and 10-9 M⊙ yr-1. These values are compatible with recent stellar evolution models of fast-rotating stars. One of the main findings of this work is a correlation between the ρ0 and n values. In order to find out whether these relations can be traced back to the evolution of discs or have some other origin, we used the VDD model to calculate temporal sequences under different assumptions for the time profile of the disc mass injection. The results support the hypothesis that the observed distribution of disc properties is due to a common evolutionary path. In particular, our results suggest that the time-scale for disc growth, during which the disc is being actively fed by mass injection episodes, is shorter than the time-scale for disc dissipation, when the disc is no longer fed by the star and dissipates as a result of the viscous diffusion of the disc material.

  13. Artificial Intelligence.

    PubMed

    Lawrence, David R; Palacios-González, César; Harris, John

    2016-04-01

    It seems natural to think that the same prudential and ethical reasons for mutual respect and tolerance that one has vis-à-vis other human persons would hold toward newly encountered paradigmatic but nonhuman biological persons. One also tends to think that they would have similar reasons for treating we humans as creatures that count morally in our own right. This line of thought transcends biological boundaries-namely, with regard to artificially (super)intelligent persons-but is this a safe assumption? The issue concerns ultimate moral significance: the significance possessed by human persons, persons from other planets, and hypothetical nonorganic persons in the form of artificial intelligence (AI). This article investigates why our possible relations to AI persons could be more complicated than they first might appear, given that they might possess a radically different nature to us, to the point that civilized or peaceful coexistence in a determinate geographical space could be impossible to achieve.

  14. Artificial Rheotaxis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Palacci, Jeremie; Sacanna, Stefano; Abramian, Anais; Hanson, Kasey; Pine, David; Chaikin, Paul; CSMR, NYU Team

    2013-11-01

    Self propelled colloids realize a controlled realization of an artificial bacterium. However living systems present a range of advanced properties such as the migration in gradients, or taxis, based on complex conformational change of proteins. For example, rheotaxis, the directed movement of an organism resulting from a fluid flow, has been reported notably for fish, e.g. salmon, or spermatozoa. Here, we present experimental observations of artificial rheotaxis, i.e. upstream migration of self propelled particles in the presence of a flow. We will present a simple model to account for this surprising effect. In the absence of biological component, this effect is intriguing and questions the ingredients at stake in the living matter.

  15. Artificial Rheotaxis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Palacci, Jeremie; Sacanna, Stefano; Hanson, Kasey; Vatchinsky, Adrian; Pine, David; Chaikin, Paul; CSMR Team

    2013-03-01

    Self propelled colloids realize a controlled realization of an artificial bacterium. However living systems present a range of advanced properties such as the migration in gradients, or taxis, based on complex conformational change of proteins. For example, rheotaxis, the directed movement of an organism resulting from a fluid flow, has been reported notably for fish, e.g. salmon, or spermatozoa. Here, we present experimental observations of artificial rheotaxis, i.e. upstream migration of self propelled particles in the presence of a flow. We will present a simple model to account for this surprising effect. In the absence of biological component, this effect is intriguing and questions the ingredients at stake in the living matter.

  16. Gravitoturbulence in magnetized protostellar discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Riols, A.; Latter, H.

    2016-08-01

    Gravitational instability (GI) features in several aspects of protostellar disc evolution, most notably in angular momentum transport, fragmentation, and the outbursts exemplified by FU Ori and EX Lupi systems. The outer regions of protostellar discs may also be coupled to magnetic fields, which could then modify the development of GI. To understand the basic elements of their interaction, we perform local 2D ideal and resistive magnetohydrodynamics simulations with an imposed toroidal field. In the regime of moderate plasma beta, we find that the system supports a hot gravitoturbulent state, characterized by considerable magnetic energy and stress and a surprisingly large Toomre parameter Q ≳ 10. This result has potential implications for disc structure, vertical thickness, ionization, etc. Our simulations also reveal the existence of long-lived and dense `magnetic islands' or plasmoids. Lastly, we find that the presence of a magnetic field has little impact on the fragmentation criterion of the disc. Though our focus is on protostellar discs, some of our results may be relevant for the outer radii of AGN.

  17. Hydrogel discs for digital microfluidics

    PubMed Central

    Fiddes, Lindsey K.; Luk, Vivienne N.; Au, Sam H.; Ng, Alphonsus H. C.; Luk, Victoria; Kumacheva, Eugenia; Wheeler, Aaron R.

    2012-01-01

    Hydrogels are networks of hydrophilic polymer chains that are swollen with water, and they are useful for a wide range of applications because they provide stable niches for immobilizing proteins and cells. We report here the marriage of hydrogels with digital microfluidic devices. Until recently, digital microfluidics, a fluid handling technique in which discrete droplets are manipulated electromechanically on the surface of an array of electrodes, has been used only for homogeneous systems involving liquid reagents. Here, we demonstrate for the first time that the cylindrical hydrogel discs can be incorporated into digital microfluidic systems and that these discs can be systematically addressed by droplets of reagents. Droplet movement is observed to be unimpeded by interaction with the gel discs, and gel discs remain stationary when droplets pass through them. Analyte transport into gel discs is observed to be identical to diffusion in cases in which droplets are incubated with gels passively, but transport is enhanced when droplets are continually actuated through the gels. The system is useful for generating integrated enzymatic microreactors and for three-dimensional cell culture. This paper demonstrates a new combination of techniques for lab-on-a-chip systems which we propose will be useful for a wide range of applications. PMID:22662096

  18. Analyses of the temporomandibular disc.

    PubMed

    Jirman, R; Fricová, M; Horák, Z; Krystůfek, J; Konvicková, S; Mazánek, J

    2007-01-01

    This project is the beginning of a large research work with a goal to develop a new total replacement of temporomandibular (TM) joint. First aim of this work was to determine the relative displacement of the TM disc and the mandible during mouth opening. The movement of the TM disc was studied using a magnetic resonance imaging. Sagittal static images in revolved sections of the TM joint were obtained in various positions of jaw opening from 0 to 50 mm. The results provided a description of the TM disc displacements as a function of jaw opening. The displacements of the mandible and TM disc were about 16 mm and 10 mm respectively at mouth opening of 50 mm, maximum rotation of the mandible was 34s. The results of these measurements can be used for clinical diagnostics and also they were used as inputs for the follows finite element analysis (FEA). Second aim of this work was to create stress and strain analysis of TM joint using non-linear FEA. Complex of TM joint consists of mandibular disc, half skull and half mandible during normal jaw opening. The results illustrate the stress distributions in the TMJ during a normal jaw opening.

  19. Artificial vision.

    PubMed

    Zarbin, M; Montemagno, C; Leary, J; Ritch, R

    2011-09-01

    A number treatment options are emerging for patients with retinal degenerative disease, including gene therapy, trophic factor therapy, visual cycle inhibitors (e.g., for patients with Stargardt disease and allied conditions), and cell transplantation. A radically different approach, which will augment but not replace these options, is termed neural prosthetics ("artificial vision"). Although rewiring of inner retinal circuits and inner retinal neuronal degeneration occur in association with photoreceptor degeneration in retinitis pigmentosa (RP), it is possible to create visually useful percepts by stimulating retinal ganglion cells electrically. This fact has lead to the development of techniques to induce photosensitivity in cells that are not light sensitive normally as well as to the development of the bionic retina. Advances in artificial vision continue at a robust pace. These advances are based on the use of molecular engineering and nanotechnology to render cells light-sensitive, to target ion channels to the appropriate cell type (e.g., bipolar cell) and/or cell region (e.g., dendritic tree vs. soma), and on sophisticated image processing algorithms that take advantage of our knowledge of signal processing in the retina. Combined with advances in gene therapy, pathway-based therapy, and cell-based therapy, "artificial vision" technologies create a powerful armamentarium with which ophthalmologists will be able to treat blindness in patients who have a variety of degenerative retinal diseases.

  20. Automatic diagnosis of lumbar disc herniation with shape and appearance features from MRI

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alomari, Raja'S.; Corso, Jason J.; Chaudhary, Vipin; Dhillon, Gurmeet

    2010-03-01

    Intervertebral disc herniation is a major reason for lower back pain (LBP), which is the second most common neurological ailment in the United States. Automation of herniated disc diagnosis reduces the large burden on radiologists who have to diagnose hundreds of cases each day using clinical MRI. We present a method for automatic diagnosis of lumbar disc herniation using appearance and shape features. We jointly use the intensity signal for modeling the appearance of herniated disc and the active shape model for modeling the shape of herniated disc. We utilize a Gibbs distribution for classification of discs using appearance and shape features. We use 33 clinical MRI cases of the lumbar area for training and testing both appearance and shape models. We achieve over 91% accuracy in detection of herniation in a cross-validation experiment with specificity of 91% and sensitivity of 94%.

  1. The psychiatric disease risk factors DISC1 and TNIK interact to regulate synapse composition and function

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Q; Charych, EI; Pulito, VL; Lee, JB; Graziane, NM; Crozier, RA; Revilla-Sanchez, R; Kelly, MP; Dunlop, AJ; Murdoch, H; Taylor, N; Xie, Y; Pausch, M; Hayashi-Takagi, A; Ishizuka, K; Seshadri, S; Bates, B; Kariya, K; Sawa, A; Weinberg, RJ; Moss, SJ; Houslay, MD; Yan, Z; Brandon, NJ

    2011-01-01

    Disrupted in schizophrenia 1 (DISC1), a genetic risk factor for multiple serious psychiatric diseases including schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and autism, is a key regulator of multiple neuronal functions linked to both normal development and disease processes. As these diseases are thought to share a common deficit in synaptic function and architecture, we have analyzed the role of DISC1 using an approach that focuses on understanding the protein– protein interactions of DISC1 specifically at synapses. We identify the Traf2 and Nck-interacting kinase (TNIK), an emerging risk factor itself for disease, as a key synaptic partner for DISC1, and provide evidence that the DISC1–TNIK interaction regulates synaptic composition and activity by stabilizing the levels of key postsynaptic density proteins. Understanding the novel DISC1–TNIK interaction is likely to provide insights into the etiology and underlying synaptic deficits found in major psychiatric diseases. PMID:20838393

  2. Effect of artificial ageing using different wood chips on the antioxidant activity, resveratrol and catechin concentration, sensory properties and colour of two Greek red wines.

    PubMed

    Gortzi, Olga; Metaxa, Xenia; Mantanis, George; Lalas, Stavros

    2013-12-01

    Two Greek red wines (Syrah and Cabernet) were artificially aged with different wood chips (white oak, red oak, Turkey oak, chestnut, Bosnian pine, cherry, common juniper, common walnut, white mulberry, black locust and apricot). The influence of each wood species was tested for up to 20 days. The optimum duration for the extraction of total polyphenols was 20 days (Syrah) or 10 days (Cabernet) when chips of white oak, chestnut, cherry, white mulberry, black locust and apricot where used. Resveratrol and catechin concentrations ranged within the limits previously reported in literature. A high antioxidant activity was established after 10 days of artificial ageing. The sensory evaluation showed that the best results were produced by the apricot chips after 5 days (Syrah) or black locust and apricot after 5 days (Cabernet). Colour was seen to increase with both time of ageing and number of wood chips added.

  3. Quantitative structure-activity relationship study of P2X7 receptor inhibitors using combination of principal component analysis and artificial intelligence methods.

    PubMed

    Ahmadi, Mehdi; Shahlaei, Mohsen

    2015-01-01

    P2X7 antagonist activity for a set of 49 molecules of the P2X7 receptor antagonists, derivatives of purine, was modeled with the aid of chemometric and artificial intelligence techniques. The activity of these compounds was estimated by means of combination of principal component analysis (PCA), as a well-known data reduction method, genetic algorithm (GA), as a variable selection technique, and artificial neural network (ANN), as a non-linear modeling method. First, a linear regression, combined with PCA, (principal component regression) was operated to model the structure-activity relationships, and afterwards a combination of PCA and ANN algorithm was employed to accurately predict the biological activity of the P2X7 antagonist. PCA preserves as much of the information as possible contained in the original data set. Seven most important PC's to the studied activity were selected as the inputs of ANN box by an efficient variable selection method, GA. The best computational neural network model was a fully-connected, feed-forward model with 7-7-1 architecture. The developed ANN model was fully evaluated by different validation techniques, including internal and external validation, and chemical applicability domain. All validations showed that the constructed quantitative structure-activity relationship model suggested is robust and satisfactory.

  4. Quantitative structure–activity relationship study of P2X7 receptor inhibitors using combination of principal component analysis and artificial intelligence methods

    PubMed Central

    Ahmadi, Mehdi; Shahlaei, Mohsen

    2015-01-01

    P2X7 antagonist activity for a set of 49 molecules of the P2X7 receptor antagonists, derivatives of purine, was modeled with the aid of chemometric and artificial intelligence techniques. The activity of these compounds was estimated by means of combination of principal component analysis (PCA), as a well-known data reduction method, genetic algorithm (GA), as a variable selection technique, and artificial neural network (ANN), as a non-linear modeling method. First, a linear regression, combined with PCA, (principal component regression) was operated to model the structure–activity relationships, and afterwards a combination of PCA and ANN algorithm was employed to accurately predict the biological activity of the P2X7 antagonist. PCA preserves as much of the information as possible contained in the original data set. Seven most important PC's to the studied activity were selected as the inputs of ANN box by an efficient variable selection method, GA. The best computational neural network model was a fully-connected, feed-forward model with 7−7−1 architecture. The developed ANN model was fully evaluated by different validation techniques, including internal and external validation, and chemical applicability domain. All validations showed that the constructed quantitative structure–activity relationship model suggested is robust and satisfactory. PMID:26600858

  5. Disrupted-in-schizophrenia 1 (DISC1) and Syntaphilin collaborate to modulate axonal mitochondrial anchoring.

    PubMed

    Park, Cana; Lee, Seol-Ae; Hong, Ji-Ho; Suh, Yeongjun; Park, Sung Jin; Suh, Bo Kyoung; Woo, Youngsik; Choi, Jinhyuk; Huh, Ji-Won; Kim, You-Me; Park, Sang Ki

    2016-07-02

    In neuronal axons, the ratio of motile-to-stationary mitochondria is tightly regulated by neuronal activation, thereby meeting the need for local calcium buffering and maintaining the ATP supply. However, the molecular players and detailed regulatory mechanisms behind neuronal mitochondrial movement are not completely understood. Here, we found that neuronal activation-induced mitochondrial anchoring is regulated by Disrupted-in-schizophrenia 1 (DISC1), which is accomplished by functional association with Syntaphilin (SNPH). DISC1 deficiency resulted in reduced axonal mitochondrial movement, which was partially reversed by concomitant SNPH depletion. In addition, a SNPH deletion mutant lacking the sequence for interaction with DISC1 exhibited an enhanced mitochondrial anchoring effect than wild-type SNPH. Moreover, upon neuronal activation, mitochondrial movement was preserved by DISC1 overexpression, not showing immobilized response of mitochondria. Taken together, we propose that DISC1 in association with SNPH is a component of a modulatory complex that determines mitochondrial anchoring in response to neuronal activation.

  6. Coevolution of binaries and circumbinary gaseous discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fleming, David P.; Quinn, Thomas R.

    2017-01-01

    The recent discoveries of circumbinary planets by Kepler raise questions for contemporary planet formation models. Understanding how these planets form requires characterizing their formation environment, the circumbinary protoplanetary disc and how the disc and binary interact and change as a result. The central binary excites resonances in the surrounding protoplanetary disc which drive evolution in both the binary orbital elements and in the disc. To probe how these interactions impact binary eccentricity and disc structure evolution, N-body smooth particle hydrodynamics simulations of gaseous protoplanetary discs surrounding binaries based on Kepler 38 were run for 104 binary periods for several initial binary eccentricities. We find that nearly circular binaries weakly couple to the disc via a parametric instability and excite disc eccentricity growth. Eccentric binaries strongly couple to the disc causing eccentricity growth for both the disc and binary. Discs around sufficiently eccentric binaries which strongly couple to the disc develop an m = 1 spiral wave launched from the 1:3 eccentric outer Lindblad resonance which corresponds to an alignment of gas particle longitude of periastrons. All systems display binary semimajor axis decay due to dissipation from the viscous disc.

  7. Competitive coordination aggregation for V-shaped [Co3] and disc-like [Co7] complexes: synthesis, magnetic properties and catechol oxidase activity.

    PubMed

    Singha Mahapatra, Tufan; Basak, Dipmalya; Chand, Santanu; Lengyel, Jeff; Shatruk, Michael; Bertolasi, Valerio; Ray, Debashis

    2016-09-14

    Unique dependence on the nature of metal salt and reaction conditions for coordination assembly reactions of varying architecture and nuclearity have been identified in V-shaped [Co3L4] and planar disc-like [Co7L6] compounds: [CoL2(μ-L)2(μ-OH2)2(CF3CO2)2] (1) and [Co(μ-L)6(μ-OMe)6]Cl2 (2) (HL = 2-{(3-ethoxypropylimino)methyl}-6-methoxyphenol). At room temperature varying reaction conditions, cobalt-ligand ratios and use of different bases allowed unique types of coordination self-assembly. The synthetic marvel lies in the nature of aggregation with respect to the two unrelated cores in 1 and 2. Complex 1 assumes a V-shaped arrangement bound to L(-), water and a trifluoroacetate anion, while 2 grows around a central Co(II) ion surrounded by a {Co} hexagon bound to methoxide and L(-). Magnetic measurements revealed that the intermetallic interactions are antiferromagnetic in nature in the case of complex 1 and ferromagnetic in the case of 2 involving high spin cobalt(ii) ions with stabilization of the high-spin ground state in the latter case. In MeCN solutions complexes 1 and 2 showed catalytic oxidation of 3,5-di-tert-butylcatechol (3,5-DTBCH2) to 3,5-di-tert-butylbenzoquinone (3,5-DTBQ) in air. The kinetic study in MeCN revealed that with respect to the catalytic turnover number (kcat) 2 is more effective than 1 for oxidation of 3,5-DTBCH2.

  8. Comparison of three standardized disc susceptibility testing methods for colistin.

    PubMed

    Tan, Thean Yen; Ng, Lily Siew Yong

    2006-10-01

    With increasing antibiotic resistance in Gram-negative bacteria, the use of the polymyxins has increased in recent years. Antibiotic disc susceptibility testing remains the most widely used method in clinical laboratories, but there is very little data on the accuracy of disc testing methods for colistin. In this study, the accuracy of three standardized methods of disc susceptibility testing for colistin was compared with agar dilution. A total of 228 clinical isolates of Acinetobacter spp., Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Enterobacteriaceae were included in the study. Isolates were tested by agar dilution for susceptibility to colistin, and results were compared with those obtained by three disc susceptibility testing methods (product insert based on CLSI methodology, British BSAC and French SFM). Colistin displayed good activity against Acinetobacter spp., Klebsiella spp. and Escherichia coli (MIC(90) 2 mg/L) but was less active against P. aeruginosa (MIC(90) 4 mg/L) and Enterobacter spp. (MIC(90) >or= 128 mg/L). Totally, 81%, 79% and 89% of colistin-resistant isolates were falsely reported as susceptible when tested by the product insert, BSAC and SFM testing methods, respectively. There were no false-resistant results. Disc susceptibility testing methods are unreliable at detecting colistin resistance. Dilution methods should be the method of choice for susceptibility testing of colistin.

  9. 21 CFR 866.1620 - Antimicrobial susceptibility test disc.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-04-01

    ... of antimicrobic-impregnated paper discs used to measure by a disc-agar diffusion technique or a disc... antimicrobial agents. In the disc-agar diffusion technique, bacterial susceptibility is ascertained by directly...

  10. 21 CFR 866.1620 - Antimicrobial susceptibility test disc.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-04-01

    ... of antimicrobic-impregnated paper discs used to measure by a disc-agar diffusion technique or a disc... antimicrobial agents. In the disc-agar diffusion technique, bacterial susceptibility is ascertained by directly...

  11. 21 CFR 866.1620 - Antimicrobial susceptibility test disc.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-04-01

    ... of antimicrobic-impregnated paper discs used to measure by a disc-agar diffusion technique or a disc... antimicrobial agents. In the disc-agar diffusion technique, bacterial susceptibility is ascertained by directly...

  12. 21 CFR 866.1620 - Antimicrobial susceptibility test disc.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-04-01

    ... of antimicrobic-impregnated paper discs used to measure by a disc-agar diffusion technique or a disc... antimicrobial agents. In the disc-agar diffusion technique, bacterial susceptibility is ascertained by directly...

  13. Impact of molybdenum nanoparticles on survival, activity of enzymes, and chemical elements in Eisenia fetida using test on artificial substrata.

    PubMed

    Lebedev, Sviatoslav; Yausheva, Elena; Galaktionova, Lyudmila; Sizova, Elena

    2016-09-01

    The influence of molybdenum oxide nanoparticles (MoO3) on the growth and survival of Eisenia fetida was established. The activity of antioxidant enzymes and changes in concentration of molybdenum in the body of E. fetida were determined. The degree of bacterial bioluminescence inhibition in extracts of substrates and worm was studied using luminescent strain Escherichia coli K12 TG1. The enzymatic activity of substrates before and after exposure with nanoparticles and worms was assessed. Nanoparticles have concentrations of 10, 40, and 500 mg/kg of dry matter, and substrata are made of artificial soil (substrate A) and microcrystalline cellulose (substrate B). Spherical nanoparticles MoO3, yellow in color, with size 92 ± 0.3 nm, Z-potential 42 ± 0.52 mV, molybdenum content 99.8 mass/%, and specific area 12 m(2)/g were used in the study. A significant decrease by 23.3 % in weight was registered (for MoO3 NPs at 500 mg/kg) on substrate A (p ≤ 0.05). On substrate B, the maximum decrease in weight by 20.5, 33.3, and 16.9 % (p ≤ 0.05) was registered at a dose of 10, 40, and 500 mg/kg, respectively; mortality was from 6.6 to 73 %. After the assessment of bacterial bioluminescence inhibition in substrates A and B (extracts) and before worms were put, the toxicity of substrates was established at doses of 40 and 500 mg/kg, expressed in inhibitory concentration (IC) 30 and IC 50 values. Comparatively, on days 7 and 14, after exposure in the presence of E. fetida, no inhibition of bioluminescence was registered in extracts of substrates A and B, indicating the reduction in toxicity of substrates. The initial content of molybdenum in E. fetida was 0.9 ± 0.018 mg/kg of dry matter. The degree of molybdenum accumulation in worm tissue was dependent on the dose and substrate quality. In particular, 2-7 mg/kg of molybdenum accumulated from substrate A, while up to 15 kg/kg of molybdenum accumulated from substrate B (day 7). Molybdenum

  14. Advancing the cellular and molecular therapy for intervertebral disc disease.

    PubMed

    Sakai, Daisuke; Grad, Sibylle

    2015-04-01

    The healthy intervertebral disc (IVD) fulfils the essential function of load absorption, while maintaining multi-axial flexibility of the spine. The interrelated tissues of the IVD, the annulus fibrosus, the nucleus pulposus, and the cartilaginous endplate, are characterised by their specific niche, implying avascularity, hypoxia, acidic environment, low nutrition, and low cellularity. Anabolic and catabolic factors balance a slow physiological turnover of extracellular matrix synthesis and breakdown. Deviations in mechanical load, nutrient supply, cellular activity, matrix composition and metabolism may initiate a cascade ultimately leading to tissue dehydration, fibrosis, nerve and vessel ingrowth, disc height loss and disc herniation. Spinal instability, inflammation and neural sensitisation are sources of back pain, a worldwide leading burden that is challenging to cure. In this review, advances in cell and molecular therapy, including mobilisation and activation of endogenous progenitor cells, progenitor cell homing, and targeted delivery of cells, genes, or bioactive factors are discussed.

  15. Size distribution of magnetic charge domains in thermally activated but out-of-equilibrium artificial spin ice

    PubMed Central

    Montaigne, F.; Lacour, D.; Chioar, I. A.; Rougemaille, N.; Louis, D.; Murtry, S. Mc; Riahi, H.; Burgos, B. Santos; Menteş, T. O.; Locatelli, A.; Canals, B.; Hehn, M.

    2014-01-01

    A crystal of emerging magnetic charges is expected in the phase diagram of the dipolar kagomé spin ice. An observation of charge crystallites in thermally demagnetized artificial spin ice arrays has been recently reported by S. Zhang and coworkers1 and explained through the thermodynamics of the system as it approaches a charge-ordered state. Following a similar approach, we have generated a partial order of magnetic charges in an artificial kagomé spin ice lattice made out of ferrimagnetic material having a Curie temperature of 475 K. A statistical study of the size of the charge domains reveals an unconventional sawtooth distribution. This distribution is in disagreement with the predictions of the thermodynamic model and is shown to be a signature of the kinetic process governing the remagnetization. PMID:25029620

  16. Size distribution of magnetic charge domains in thermally activated but out-of-equilibrium artificial spin ice.

    PubMed

    Montaigne, F; Lacour, D; Chioar, I A; Rougemaille, N; Louis, D; Mc Murtry, S; Riahi, H; Burgos, B Santos; Menteş, T O; Locatelli, A; Canals, B; Hehn, M

    2014-07-16

    A crystal of emerging magnetic charges is expected in the phase diagram of the dipolar kagomé spin ice. An observation of charge crystallites in thermally demagnetized artificial spin ice arrays has been recently reported by S. Zhang and coworkers and explained through the thermodynamics of the system as it approaches a charge-ordered state. Following a similar approach, we have generated a partial order of magnetic charges in an artificial kagomé spin ice lattice made out of ferrimagnetic material having a Curie temperature of 475 K. A statistical study of the size of the charge domains reveals an unconventional sawtooth distribution. This distribution is in disagreement with the predictions of the thermodynamic model and is shown to be a signature of the kinetic process governing the remagnetization.

  17. Fatigue responses of the human cervical spine intervertebral discs.

    PubMed

    Yoganandan, Narayan; Umale, Sagar; Stemper, Brain; Snyder, Bryan

    2017-05-01

    Numerous studies have been conducted since more than fifty years to understand the behavior of the human lumbar spine under fatigue loading. Applications have been largely driven by low back pain and human body vibration problems. The human neck also sustains fatigue loading in certain type of civilian occupational and military operational activities, and research is very limited in this area. Being a visco-elastic structure, it is important to determine the stress-relaxation properties of the human cervical spine intervertebral discs to enable accurate simulations of these structures in stress-analysis models. While finite element models have the ability to incorporate viscoelastic material definitions, data specific to the cervical spine are limited. The present study was conducted to determine these properties and understand the responses of the human lower cervical spine discs under large number of cyclic loads in the axial compression mode. Eight disc segments consisting of the adjacent vertebral bodies along with the longitudinal ligaments were subjected to compression, followed by 10,000 cycles of loading at 2 or 4Hz frequency by limiting the axial load to approximately 150 N, and subsequent to resting period, subjected to compression to extract the stress-relaxation properties using the quasi-linear viscoelastic (QLV) material model. The coefficients of the model and disc displacements as a function of cycles and loading frequency are presented. The disc responses demonstrated a plateauing effect after the first 2000 to 4000 cycles, which were highly nonlinear. The paper compares these responses with the "work hardening" phenomenon proposed in clinical literature for the lumbar spine to explain the fatigue behavior of the discs. The quantitative results in terms of QLV coefficients can serve as inputs to complex finite element models of the cervical spine to delineate the local and internal load-sharing responses of the disc segment. Published by Elsevier

  18. 26 CFR 1.246-4 - Dividends from a DISC or former DISC.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... 26 Internal Revenue 3 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Dividends from a DISC or former DISC. 1.246-4... TAX (CONTINUED) INCOME TAXES Special Deductions for Corporations § 1.246-4 Dividends from a DISC or former DISC. The deduction provided in section 243 (relating to dividends received by corporations) is...

  19. Generation of inclined protoplanetary discs and misaligned planets through mass accretion - I. Coplanar secondary discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xiang-Gruess, M.; Kroupa, P.

    2017-10-01

    We study the three-dimensional (3D) evolution of a viscous protoplanetary disc that accretes gas material from a second protoplanetary disc during a close encounter in an embedded star cluster. The aim is to investigate the capability of the mass accretion scenario to generate strongly inclined gaseous discs that could later form misaligned planets. We use smoothed particle hydrodynamics to study mass transfer and disc inclination for passing stars and circumstellar discs with different masses. We explore different orbital configurations to find the parameter space that allows significant disc inclination generation. Thies et al. suggested that significant disc inclination and disc or planetary system shrinkage can generally be produced by the accretion of external gas material with a different angular momentum. We found that this condition can be fulfilled for a large range of gas mass and angular momentum. For all encounters, mass accretion from the secondary disc increases with decreasing mass of the secondary proto-star. Thus, higher disc inclinations can be attained for lower secondary stellar masses. Variations of the secondary disc's orientation relative to the orbital plane can alter the disc evolution significantly. The results taken together show that mass accretion can change the 3D disc orientation significantly resulting in strongly inclined discs. In combination with the gravitational interaction between the two star-disc systems, this scenario is relevant for explaining the formation of highly inclined discs that could later form misaligned planets.

  20. Whispering galleries and the control of artificial atoms

    PubMed Central

    Forrester, Derek Michael; Kusmartsev, Feodor V.

    2016-01-01

    Quantum computation using artificial-atoms, such as novel superconducting circuits, can be sensitively controlled by external electromagnetic fields. These fields and the self-fields attributable to the coupled artificial-atoms influence the amount of quantum correlation in the system. However, control elements that can operate without complete destruction of the entanglement of the quantum-bits are difficult to engineer. Here we investigate the possibility of using closely-spaced-linear arrays of metallic-elliptical discs as whispering gallery waveguides to control artificial-atoms. The discs confine and guide radiation through the array with small notches etched into their sides that act as scatterers. We focus on π-ring artificial-atoms, which can generate their own spontaneous fluxes. We find that the micro-discs of the waveguides can be excited by terahertz frequency fields to exhibit whispering-modes and that a quantum-phase-gate composed of π-rings can be operated under their influence. Furthermore, we gauge the level of entanglement through the concurrence measure and show that under certain magnetic conditions a series of entanglement sudden-deaths and revivals occur between the two qubits. This is important for understanding the stability and life-time of qubit operations using, for example, a phase gate in a hybrid of quantum technologies composed of control elements and artificial-atoms. PMID:27122353

  1. Whispering galleries and the control of artificial atoms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forrester, Derek Michael; Kusmartsev, Feodor V.

    2016-04-01

    Quantum computation using artificial-atoms, such as novel superconducting circuits, can be sensitively controlled by external electromagnetic fields. These fields and the self-fields attributable to the coupled artificial-atoms influence the amount of quantum correlation in the system. However, control elements that can operate without complete destruction of the entanglement of the quantum-bits are difficult to engineer. Here we investigate the possibility of using closely-spaced-linear arrays of metallic-elliptical discs as whispering gallery waveguides to control artificial-atoms. The discs confine and guide radiation through the array with small notches etched into their sides that act as scatterers. We focus on π-ring artificial-atoms, which can generate their own spontaneous fluxes. We find that the micro-discs of the waveguides can be excited by terahertz frequency fields to exhibit whispering-modes and that a quantum-phase-gate composed of π-rings can be operated under their influence. Furthermore, we gauge the level of entanglement through the concurrence measure and show that under certain magnetic conditions a series of entanglement sudden-deaths and revivals occur between the two qubits. This is important for understanding the stability and life-time of qubit operations using, for example, a phase gate in a hybrid of quantum technologies composed of control elements and artificial-atoms.

  2. Whispering galleries and the control of artificial atoms.

    PubMed

    Forrester, Derek Michael; Kusmartsev, Feodor V

    2016-04-28

    Quantum computation using artificial-atoms, such as novel superconducting circuits, can be sensitively controlled by external electromagnetic fields. These fields and the self-fields attributable to the coupled artificial-atoms influence the amount of quantum correlation in the system. However, control elements that can operate without complete destruction of the entanglement of the quantum-bits are difficult to engineer. Here we investigate the possibility of using closely-spaced-linear arrays of metallic-elliptical discs as whispering gallery waveguides to control artificial-atoms. The discs confine and guide radiation through the array with small notches etched into their sides that act as scatterers. We focus on π-ring artificial-atoms, which can generate their own spontaneous fluxes. We find that the micro-discs of the waveguides can be excited by terahertz frequency fields to exhibit whispering-modes and that a quantum-phase-gate composed of π-rings can be operated under their influence. Furthermore, we gauge the level of entanglement through the concurrence measure and show that under certain magnetic conditions a series of entanglement sudden-deaths and revivals occur between the two qubits. This is important for understanding the stability and life-time of qubit operations using, for example, a phase gate in a hybrid of quantum technologies composed of control elements and artificial-atoms.

  3. Expression of DISC1-Interactome Members Correlates with Cognitive Phenotypes Related to Schizophrenia

    PubMed Central

    Rampino, Antonio; Walker, Rosie May; Torrance, Helen Scott; Anderson, Susan Maguire; Fazio, Leonardo; Di Giorgio, Annabella; Taurisano, Paolo; Gelao, Barbara; Romano, Raffaella; Masellis, Rita; Ursini, Gianluca; Caforio, Grazia; Blasi, Giuseppe; Millar, J. Kirsty; Porteous, David John; Thomson, Pippa Ann; Bertolino, Alessandro; Evans, Kathryn Louise

    2014-01-01

    Cognitive dysfunction is central to the schizophrenia phenotype. Genetic and functional studies have implicated Disrupted-in-Schizophrenia 1 (DISC1), a leading candidate gene for schizophrenia and related psychiatric conditions, in cognitive function. Altered expression of DISC1 and DISC1-interactors has been identified in schizophrenia. Dysregulated expression of DISC1-interactome genes might, therefore, contribute to schizophrenia susceptibility via disruption of molecular systems required for normal cognitive function. Here, the blood RNA expression levels of DISC1 and DISC1-interacting proteins were measured in 63 control subjects. Cognitive function was assessed using neuropsychiatric tests and functional magnetic resonance imaging was used to assess the activity of prefrontal cortical regions during the N-back working memory task, which is abnormal in schizophrenia. Pairwise correlations between gene expression levels and the relationship between gene expression levels and cognitive function and N-back-elicited brain activity were assessed. Finally, the expression levels of DISC1, AKAP9, FEZ1, NDEL1 and PCM1 were compared between 63 controls and 69 schizophrenic subjects. We found that DISC1-interactome genes showed correlated expression in the blood of healthy individuals. The expression levels of several interactome members were correlated with cognitive performance and N-back-elicited activity in the prefrontal cortex. In addition, DISC1 and NDEL1 showed decreased expression in schizophrenic subjects compared to healthy controls. Our findings highlight the importance of the coordinated expression of DISC1-interactome genes for normal cognitive function and suggest that dysregulated DISC1 and NDEL1 expression might, in part, contribute to susceptibility for schizophrenia via disruption of prefrontal cortex-dependent cognitive functions. PMID:24940743

  4. Photoevaporating transitional discs and molecular cloud cores

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Min; Sui, Ning

    2017-04-01

    We investigate the evolution of photoevaporating protoplanetary discs including mass influx from molecular cloud cores. We examine the influence of cloud core properties on the formation and evolution of transitional discs. We use one-dimensional thin disc assumption and calculate the evolution of the protoplanetary disc. The effects of X-ray photoevaporation are also included. Our calculations suggest that most discs should experience the transitional disc phase within 10 Myr. The formation time of a gap and its initial location are functions of the properties of the cloud cores. In some circumstances, discs can open two gaps by photoevaporation alone. The two gaps form when the gas in the disc can expand to large radius and if the mass at large radius is sufficiently small. The surface density profile of the disc determines whether the two gaps can form. Since the structure of a disc is determined by the properties of a molecular cloud core, the core properties determine the formation of two gaps in the disc. We further find that even when the photoevaporation rate is reduced to 10 per cent of the standard value, two gaps can still form in the disc. The only difference is that the formation time is delayed.

  5. Hydrodynamic ablation of protoplanetary discs via supernovae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Close, J. L.; Pittard, J. M.

    2017-07-01

    We present three-dimensional simulations of a protoplanetary disc subject to the effect of a nearby (0.3 pc distant) supernova (SN), using a time-dependent flow from a one-dimensional numerical model of the supernova remnant (SNR), in addition to constant peak ram pressure simulations. Simulations are performed for a variety of disc masses and inclination angles. We find disc mass-loss rates that are typically 10-7-10-6 M⊙ yr-1 (but they peak near 10-5 M⊙ yr-1 during the 'instantaneous' stripping phase) and are sustained for around 200 yr. Inclination angle has little effect on the mass-loss unless the disc is close to edge-on. Inclined discs also strip asymmetrically with the trailing edge ablating more easily. Since the interaction lasts less than one outer rotation period, there is not enough time for the disc to restore its symmetry, leaving the disc asymmetrical after the flow has passed. Of the low-mass discs considered, only the edge-on disc is able to survive interaction with the SNR (with 50 per cent of its initial mass remaining). At the end of the simulations, discs that survive contain fractional masses of SN material up to 5 × 10-6. This is too low to explain the abundance of short-lived radionuclides in the early Solar system, but a larger disc and the inclusion of radiative cooling might allow the disc to capture a higher fraction of SN material.

  6. Electromagnetic Levitation of a Disc

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Valle, R.; Neves, F.; de Andrade, R., Jr.; Stephan, R. M.

    2012-01-01

    This paper presents a teaching experiment that explores the levitation of a disc of ferromagnetic material in the presence of the magnetic field produced by a single electromagnet. In comparison to the classical experiment of the levitation of a sphere, the main advantage of the proposed laboratory bench is that the uniform magnetic field…

  7. Electromagnetic Levitation of a Disc

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Valle, R.; Neves, F.; de Andrade, R., Jr.; Stephan, R. M.

    2012-01-01

    This paper presents a teaching experiment that explores the levitation of a disc of ferromagnetic material in the presence of the magnetic field produced by a single electromagnet. In comparison to the classical experiment of the levitation of a sphere, the main advantage of the proposed laboratory bench is that the uniform magnetic field…

  8. Twin Disc Gear Tooth Simulator

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1994-05-01

    temperature testing, i.e., aluminum, titanium alloys, or magnesium with Krytox . * Use adequate forced-draft ventilation. * Prior to conducting any...ultrasonic cleaner charged with Stoddard solvent. 2. Prior to installation, wipe all disc surfaces with a lint-free cloth dampened with Stoddard solvent

  9. Intervertebral disc calcifications in children.

    PubMed

    Beluffi, G; Fiori, P; Sileo, C

    2009-03-01

    This study was done to assess the presence of both asymptomatic and symptomatic intervertebral disc calcifications in a large paediatric population. We retrospectively reviewed the radiographs taken during the past 26 years in children (age 0-18 years) undergoing imaging of the spine or of other body segments in which the spine was adequately depicted, to determine possible intervertebral disc calcifications. The following clinical evaluation was extrapolated from the patients' charts: presence of spinal symptoms, history of trauma, suspected or clinically evident scoliosis, suspected or clinically evident syndromes, bone dysplasias, and pre- or postoperative chest or abdominal X-rays. We detected intervertebral disc calcifications in six patients only. Five calcifications were asymptomatic (one newborn baby with Patau syndrome; three patients studied to rule out scoliosis, hypochondroplasia and syndromic traits; one for dyspnoea due to sunflower seeds inhalation). Only one was symptomatic, with acute neck pain. Calcifications varied in number from one in one patient to two to five in the others. Apart from the calcification in the patient with cervical pain, all calcifications were asymptomatic and constituted an incidental finding (particularly those detected at the thoracic level in the patient studied for sunflower-seed inhalation). Calcification shapes were either linear or round. Our series confirms that intervertebral disc calcifications are a rare finding in childhood and should not be a source of concern: symptomatic calcifications tend to regress spontaneously within a short time with or without therapy and immobilisation, whereas asymptomatic calcifications may last for years but disappear before the age of 20 years. Only very few cases, such as those of medullary compression or severe dysphagia due to anterior herniation of cervical discs, may require surgical procedures.

  10. Artificial Induction of Associative Olfactory Memory by Optogenetic and Thermogenetic Activation of Olfactory Sensory Neurons and Octopaminergic Neurons in Drosophila Larvae

    PubMed Central

    Honda, Takato; Lee, Chi-Yu; Honjo, Ken; Furukubo-Tokunaga, Katsuo

    2016-01-01

    The larval brain of Drosophila melanogaster provides an excellent system for the study of the neurocircuitry mechanism of memory. Recent development of neurogenetic techniques in fruit flies enables manipulations of neuronal activities in freely behaving animals. This protocol describes detailed steps for artificial induction of olfactory associative memory in Drosophila larvae. In this protocol, the natural reward signal is substituted by thermogenetic activation of octopaminergic neurons in the brain. In parallel, the odor signal is substituted by optogenetic activation of a specific class of olfactory receptor neurons. Association of reward and odor stimuli is achieved with the concomitant application of blue light and heat that leads to activation of both sets of neurons in living transgenic larvae. Given its operational simplicity and robustness, this method could be utilized to further our knowledge on the neurocircuitry mechanism of memory in the fly brain. PMID:27445732

  11. The relationship between quantitative measures of disc height and disc signal intensity with Pfirrmann score of disc degeneration.

    PubMed

    Salamat, Sara; Hutchings, John; Kwong, Clemens; Magnussen, John; Hancock, Mark J

    2016-01-01

    To assess the relationship between quantitative measures of disc height and signal intensity with the Pfirrmann disc degeneration scoring system and to test the inter-rater reliability of the quantitative measures. Participants were 76 people who had recently recovered from their last episode of acute low back pain and underwent MRI scan on a single 3T machine. At all 380 lumbar discs, quantitative measures of disc height and signal intensity were made by 2 independent raters and compared to Pfirrmann scores from a single radiologist. For quantitative measures of disc height and signal intensity a "raw" score and 2 adjusted ratios were calculated and the relationship with Pfirrmann scores was assessed. The inter-tester reliability of quantitative measures was also investigated. There was a strong linear relationship between quantitative disc signal intensity and Pfirrmann scores for grades 1-4, but not for grades 4 and 5. For disc height only, Pfirrmann grade 5 had significantly reduced disc height compared to all other grades. Results were similar regardless of whether raw or adjusted scores were used. Inter-rater reliability for the quantitative measures was excellent (ICC > 0.97). Quantitative measures of disc signal intensity were strongly related to Pfirrmann scores from grade 1 to 4; however disc height only differentiated between grade 4 and 5 Pfirrmann scores. Using adjusted ratios for quantitative measures of disc height or signal intensity did not significantly alter the relationship with Pfirrmann scores.

  12. Engineered Microporosity: Enhancing the Early Regenerative Potential of Decellularized Temporomandibular Joint Discs

    PubMed Central

    Juran, Cassandra M.; Dolwick, M. Franklin

    2015-01-01

    The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disc is susceptible to numerous pathologies that may lead to structural degradation and jaw dysfunction. The limited treatment options and debilitating nature of severe temporomandibular disorders has been the primary driving force for the introduction and development of TMJ disc tissue engineering as an approach to alleviate this important clinical issue. This study aimed to evaluate the efficacy of laser micropatterning (LMP) ex vivo-derived TMJ disc scaffolds to enhance cellular integration, a major limitation to the development of whole tissue implant technology. LMP was incorporated into the decellularized extracellular matrix scaffold structure using a 40 W CO2 laser ablation system to drill an 8×16 pattern with a bore diameter of 120 μm through the scaffold thickness. Disc scaffolds were seeded with human neonatal-derived umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells differentiated into chondrocytes at a density of 900 cells per mm2 and then assessed on days 1, 7, 14, and 21 of culture. Results derived from histology, PicoGreen DNA quantification, and cellular metabolism assays indicate that the LMP scaffolds improve cellular remodeling compared to the unworked scaffold over the 21-day culture period. Mechanical analysis further supports the use of the LMP showing the compressive properties of the LMP constructs closely represent native disc mechanics. The addition of an artificial path of infiltration by LMP culminated in improved chondrocyte adhesion, dispersion, and migration after extended culture aiding in recapitulating the native TMJ disc characteristics. PMID:25319941

  13. The role of cryopreservation in the biomechanical properties of the intervertebral disc.

    PubMed

    Lam, S K L; Chan, S C W; Leung, V Y L; Lu, W W; Cheung, K M C; Luk, K D K

    2011-12-17

    Implantation of intervertebral disc (IVD) allograft or tissue engineered disc constructs in the spine has emerged as an alternative to artificial disc replacement for the treatment of severe degenerative disc disease (DDD). Establishment of a bank of cryopreserved IVD allografts enables size matching and facilitates logistics for effective clinical management. However, the biomechanical properties of cryopreserved IVDs have not been previously reported. This study aimed to assess if cryopreservation with different concentrations of cryopreservant agents (CPA) would affect the dynamic viscoelastic properties of the IVD. Whole porcine lumbar IVDs (n = 40) were harvested and processed using various concentrations of CPA, 0 % CPA, 10 % CPA and 20 % CPA. The discs were cryopreserved using a stepwise freezing protocol and stored in liquid nitrogen. After four weeks of storage, the cryopreserved IVDs were quickly thawed at 37 °C for dynamic viscoelastic testing. The apparent modulus, elastic modulus (G'), viscous modulus (G") and loss modulus (G"/G') were calculated and compared to a fresh control group. Cryopreserved IVD without cryopreservants was significantly stiffer than the control. In the dynamic viscoelastic testing, cryopreservation with the use of CPA was able to preserve both G' and G" of an IVD. No significant differences were found between fresh IVD and IVD cryopreserved with 10 % CPA or 20 % CPA. This study demonstrated that CPAs at an optimal concentration could preserve the mechanical properties of the IVD allograft and can provide further credence for the application of long-term storage of IVD allografts for disc transplantation or tissue engineered construct applications.

  14. DISC1 is associated with cortical thickness and neural efficiency

    PubMed Central

    Brauns, Stefan; Gollub, Randy L.; Roffman, Joshua L.; Yendiki, Anastasia; Ho, Beng-Choon; Wassink, Thomas H.; Heinz, Andreas; Ehrlich, Stefan

    2011-01-01

    Background Disrupted in schizophrenia 1 (DISC1) is known to play a major role during brain development and is a candidate gene for schizophrenia. Cortical thickness is highly heritable and several MRI studies have shown widespread reductions of cortical thickness in patients with schizophrenia. Here, we investigated the effects of variation in DISC1 on cortical thickness. In a subsequent analysis we tested whether the identified DISC1 risk variant is also associated with neural activity during working memory functioning. Methods We acquired structural MRI (sMRI), functional MRI (fMRI) and genotype data from 96 healthy volunteers. Separate cortical statistical maps for five single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) of DISC1 were generated to detect differences of cortical thickness in genotype groups across the entire cortical surface. Working-memory related load-dependent activation was measured during the Sternberg Item Recognition Paradigm and analyzed using a region-of-interest approach. Results Phe allele carriers of the DISC1 SNP Leu607Phe had significantly reduced cortical thickness in the left supramarginal gyrus compared to Leu/Leu homozygotes. Neural activity in the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) during working memory task was increased in Phe allele carriers, whereas working memory performance did not differ between genotype groups. Conclusions This study provides convergent evidence for the effect of DISC1 risk variants on two independent brain-based intermediate phenotypes of schizophrenia. The same risk variant was associated with cortical thickness reductions and signs of neural inefficiency during a working memory task. Our findings provide further evidence for a neurodevelopmental model of schizophrenia. PMID:21642004

  15. NASA GES DISC DAAC Satellite Data for GIS

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nickless, Darryl; Leptoukh, Gregory; Morahan, Michael; Pollack, Nathan; Savtchenko, Andrey; Teng, William

    2005-01-01

    NASA's Goddard Earth Science (GES) Data and Information Services Center (DISC) Distributed Active Archive Center (DAAC) makes available a large and continually growing collection of spatially continuous global satellite observations of environmental parameters. These products include those from the MODIS (Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) on both Terra and Aqua platforms, and the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM). These data products are well suited for use within Geographic Information Systems (GIS), as both backdrops to cartographic products as well as spatial analysis. However, data format, file size, and other issues have limited their widespread use by traditional GIS users. To address these data usability issues, the GES DISC DAAC recently updated tools and improved documentation of conversion procedures. In addition, the GES DISC DAAC has also been working with a major GIS software vendor to incorporate the ability to read the native Hierarchial Data Format (HDF), the format in which most of the NASA data is stored. The result is the enabling of GIS users to realize the benefit of GES DISC DAAC data without a substantial expenditure in resources to incorporate these data into their GIS. Several documents regarding the potential uses of GES DISC DAAC satellite data in GIS have recently been created. These show the combinations of concurrent data from different satellite products with traditional GIS vector products for given geographic areas. These map products include satellite imagery of Hurricane Isabel and the California wildfires, and can be viewed at http://daac.gsfc.nasa.gov/MODIS/GIS/.

  16. NASA GES DISC DAAC Satellite Data for GIS

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nickless, Darryl; Leptoukh, Gregory; Morahan, Michael; Pollack, Nathan; Savtchenko, Andrey; Teng, William

    2005-01-01

    NASA's Goddard Earth Science (GES) Data and Information Services Center (DISC) Distributed Active Archive Center (DAAC) makes available a large and continually growing collection of spatially continuous global satellite observations of environmental parameters. These products include those from the MODIS (Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) on both Terra and Aqua platforms, and the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM). These data products are well suited for use within Geographic Information Systems (GIS), as both backdrops to cartographic products as well as spatial analysis. However, data format, file size, and other issues have limited their widespread use by traditional GIS users. To address these data usability issues, the GES DISC DAAC recently updated tools and improved documentation of conversion procedures. In addition, the GES DISC DAAC has also been working with a major GIS software vendor to incorporate the ability to read the native Hierarchial Data Format (HDF), the format in which most of the NASA data is stored. The result is the enabling of GIS users to realize the benefit of GES DISC DAAC data without a substantial expenditure in resources to incorporate these data into their GIS. Several documents regarding the potential uses of GES DISC DAAC satellite data in GIS have recently been created. These show the combinations of concurrent data from different satellite products with traditional GIS vector products for given geographic areas. These map products include satellite imagery of Hurricane Isabel and the California wildfires, and can be viewed at http://daac.gsfc.nasa.gov/MODIS/GIS/.

  17. Silver nano fabrication using leaf disc of Passiflora foetida Linn

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lade, Bipin D.; Patil, Anita S.

    2017-06-01

    The main purpose of the experiment is to develop a greener low cost SNP fabrication steps using factories of secondary metabolites from Passiflora leaf extract. Here, the leaf extraction process is omitted, and instead a leaf disc was used for stable SNP fabricated by optimizing parameters such as a circular leaf disc of 2 cm (1, 2, 3, 4, 5) instead of leaf extract and grade of pH (7, 8, 9, 11). The SNP synthesis reaction is tried under room temperature, sun, UV and dark condition. The leaf disc preparation steps are also discussed in details. The SNP obtained using (1 mM: 100 ml AgNO3+ singular leaf disc: pH 9, 11) is applied against featured room temperature and sun condition. The UV spectroscopic analysis confirms that sun rays synthesized SNP yields stable nano particles. The FTIR analysis confirms a large number of functional groups such as alkanes, alkyne, amines, aliphatic amine, carboxylic acid; nitro-compound, alcohol, saturated aldehyde and phenols involved in reduction of silver salt to zero valent ions. The leaf disc mediated synthesis of silver nanoparticles, minimizes leaf extract preparation step and eligible for stable SNP synthesis. The methods sun and room temperature based nano particles synthesized within 10 min would be use certainly for antimicrobial activity.

  18. Anticonvulsant activity of artificial sweeteners: a structural link between sweet-taste receptor T1R3 and brain glutamate receptors.

    PubMed

    Talevi, Alan; Enrique, Andrea V; Bruno-Blanch, Luis E

    2012-06-15

    A virtual screening campaign based on application of a topological discriminant function capable of identifying novel anticonvulsant agents indicated several widely-used artificial sweeteners as potential anticonvulsant candidates. Acesulfame potassium, cyclamate and saccharin were tested in the Maximal Electroshock Seizure model (mice, ip), showing moderate anticonvulsant activity. We hypothesized a probable structural link between the receptor responsible of sweet taste and anticonvulsant molecular targets. Bioinformatic tools confirmed a highly significant sequence-similarity between taste-related protein T1R3 and several metabotropic glutamate receptors from different species, including glutamate receptors upregulated in epileptogenesis and certain types of epilepsy. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Learning the Relationship between the Primary Structure of HIV Envelope Glycoproteins and Neutralization Activity of Particular Antibodies by Using Artificial Neural Networks

    PubMed Central

    Buiu, Cătălin; Putz, Mihai V.; Avram, Speranta

    2016-01-01

    The dependency between the primary structure of HIV envelope glycoproteins (ENV) and the neutralization data for given antibodies is very complicated and depends on a large number of factors, such as the binding affinity of a given antibody for a given ENV protein, and the intrinsic infection kinetics of the viral strain. This paper presents a first approach to learning these dependencies using an artificial feedforward neural network which is trained to learn from experimental data. The results presented here demonstrate that the trained neural network is able to generalize on new viral strains and to predict reliable values of neutralizing activities of given antibodies against HIV-1. PMID:27727189

  20. Peripheral Disc Margin Shape and Internal Disc Derangement: Imaging Correlation in Significantly Painful Discs Identified at Provocation Lumbar Discography

    PubMed Central

    Bartynski, W.S.; Rothfus, W.E.

    2012-01-01

    Summary Annular margin shape is used to characterize lumbar disc abnormality on CT/MR imaging studies. Abnormal discs also have internal derangement including annular degeneration and radial defects. The purpose of this study was to evaluate potential correlation between disc-margin shape and annular internal derangement on post-discogram CT in significantly painful discs encountered at provocation lumbar discography (PLD). Significantly painful discs were encountered at 126 levels in 86 patients (47 male, 39 female) studied by PLD where no prior surgery had been performed and response to intradiscal lidocaine after provocation resulted in either substantial/total relief or no improvement after lidocaine administration. Post-discogram CT and discogram imaging was evaluated for disc-margin characteristics (bulge/protrusion), features of disc internal derangement (radial annular defect [RD: radial tear/fissure/annular gap], annular degeneration) and presence/absence of discographic contrast leakage. In discs with focal protrusion, 50 of 63 (79%) demonstrated Grade 3 RD with 13 (21%) demonstrating severe degenerative change only. In discs with generalized-bulge-only, 48 of 63 (76%) demonstrated degenerative change only (primarily Dallas Grade 3) with 15 of 63 (24%) demonstrating a RD (Dallas Grade 3). Differences were highly statistically significant (p<0.001). Pain elimination with intra-discal lidocaine correlated with discographic contrast leakage (p<0.001). Disc-margin shape correlates with features of internal derangement in significantly painful discs encountered at PLD. Discs with focal protrusion typically demonstrate RD while generalized bulging discs typically demonstrated degenerative changes only (p<0.001). Disc-margin shape may provide an important imaging clue to the cause of chronic discogenic low back pain. PMID:22681741

  1. The cellular memory disc of reprogrammed cells.

    PubMed

    Anjamrooz, Seyed Hadi

    2013-04-01

    The crucial facts underlying the low efficiency of cellular reprogramming are poorly understood. Cellular reprogramming occurs in nuclear transfer, induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) formation, cell fusion, and lineage-switching experiments. Despite these advances, there are three fundamental problems to be addressed: (1) the majority of cells cannot be reprogrammed, (2) the efficiency of reprogramming cells is usually low, and (3) the reprogrammed cells developed from a patient's own cells activate immune responses. These shortcomings present major obstacles for using reprogramming approaches in customised cell therapy. In this Perspective, the author synthesises past and present observations in the field of cellular reprogramming to propose a theoretical picture of the cellular memory disc. The current hypothesis is that all cells undergo an endogenous and exogenous holographic memorisation such that parts of the cellular memory dramatically decrease the efficiency of reprogramming cells, act like a barrier against reprogramming in the majority of cells, and activate immune responses. Accordingly, the focus of this review is mainly to describe the cellular memory disc (CMD). Based on the present theory, cellular memory includes three parts: a reprogramming-resistance memory (RRM), a switch-promoting memory (SPM) and a culture-induced memory (CIM). The cellular memory arises genetically, epigenetically and non-genetically and affects cellular behaviours. [corrected].

  2. [Optic disc granuloma secondary to sarcoidosis].

    PubMed

    Qu-Knafo, L; Auregan-Giocanti, A

    2017-02-01

    We report a case of optic disc granuloma due to sarcoidosis. A 64-year-old, caucasian female with a history of pulmonary sarcoidosis presented with a vision loss on her left eye. The ophthalmologic examination revealed a discrete optic disc infiltrate compatible with the diagnosis of optic disc granuloma. Fluorescein angiography showed diffusion and impregnation of the granuloma without vascularitis. The optical coherence tomography demonstrated a homogenous and isoreflective lesion at the optic disc. The patient recovered her visual acuity after systemic corticosteroid treatment. Isolated optic disc granuloma is a rare condition of ocular sarcoidosis.

  3. Sealing arrangement with annular flexible disc

    DOEpatents

    Pennell, William E.; Honigsberg, Charles A.

    1983-01-01

    Fluid sealing arrangements including an annular shaped flexible disc having enlarged edges disposed within channel-shaped annular receptacles which are spaced from one another. The receptacles form an annular region for contacting and containing the enlarged edges of the disc, and the disc is preloaded to a conical configuration. The disc is flexibly and movably supported within the receptacles so that unevenly distributed relative motion between the components containing the receptacles is accommodated without loss of sealing contact between the edges of the disc and the walls of the receptacles.

  4. Planetary migration in weakly magnetized turbulent discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baruteau, C.; Fromang, S.; Nelson, R. P.; Masset, F.

    2011-12-01

    In laminar viscous disc models, the migration of protoplanets embedded in their nascent protoplanetary discs may be directed inwards or outwards, depending on the relative magnitude of the Lindblad and corotation torques. The long-term evolution of the corotation torque is intimately related to diffusion processes inside the planet's horseshoe region. This communication examines the properties of the corotation torque in discs where magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) turbulence develops as a result of the magnetorotational instability (MRI), considering a weak initial toroidal magnetic field. We show that the differential Lindblad torque takes very similar values in MHD turbulent and laminar viscous discs, and there exists an unsaturated corotation torque in MHD turbulent discs.

  5. Artificial gravity.

    PubMed

    Scott, William B

    2005-04-25

    NASA's Artificial Gravity program consists of a team of researchers from Wyle Laboratories, NASA Johnson Space Center, and the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB). The short-radius centrifuge (SRC), built by Wyle Laboratories, will be integrated with UTMB's conducted bedrest studies, which mimic the detrimental effects of weightlessness (or microgravity). Bedrest subjects will be spun on the SRC at various accelerations and for various time periods, while being monitored medically. Parameters such as bone loss, muscle atrophy, balance control, and oxygen consumption will then be compared in order to research ways of mitigating the impact on astronauts' physiology. Other potential benefits from these studies extend to population groups on Earth, such as bedridden patients.

  6. An Analysis of Burst Disc Pressure Instability

    SciTech Connect

    S. L. Robinson; B. C. Odegard, Jr.; N. r. Moody; S. H. Goods

    2000-06-01

    During the development stage of the 1X Acorn burst disc, burst pressure test results exhibited an unexpected increase of 8 to 14% over times of 90--100 days from initial fabrication. This increase is a concern where design constraints require stability. The disc material, 316L stainless steel sheet, is formed to a dome-like geometry and scored to produce a thin-walled, high-strength ligament. The fracture events controlling burst occur in that ligament. Thus it has been characterized both for tensile properties and microstructure through nanoindentation, magnetic measurements, optical and transmission electron microscopy. These results compare favorably with finite element simulation of the properties of the ligament. The ligament exhibits a highly heterogeneous microstructure; its small volume and microstructural heterogeneity make it difficult to identify which microstructural feature controls fracture and hence burst pressure. Bulk mechanical test specimens were fabricated to emulate mid-ligament properties, and aged at both room and elevated temperatures to characterize and accelerate the temporal behavior of the burst disc. Property changes included yield and ultimate tensile strength increases, and fracture strain decreases with aging. Specimens were subjected to a reversion anneal identical to that given the burst disc to eliminate the martensite phase formed during rolling. Reversion-annealed samples exhibited no chang